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A Simple Recipe for Mulled Wine

Last December you might have stared into the bottom of a steaming wine glass wondering what those bits were that turned a cheap, neglected bottle of merlot into warm liquid Christmas. Then you probably went back for more, forgetting everything about making it yourself next year; indeed, forgetting everything that lay beyond the realm of your armchair and warm fire. But this year you will be prepared, for we have mulled over this recipe so you don’t have to.

For approximately 12 servings (preferable shared between at least 2 people):

2 unwaxed oranges
I lemon, peel only

150g caster sugar
5 cloves
5 cardamom pods, bruised
1 cinnamon stick
A pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
2 bottles of fruity, unoaked red wine
150ml ginger wine

  1. Peel and juice 1 orange, and add it to a large saucepan along with the lemon peel, the sugar and the spices. Add a small bit of wine to cover the sugar, and heat gently while stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Bring it to a boil and cook for a further 5-8 minutes until it has a thick syrupy texture.

  2. Turn the heat to a low setting and add the remainder of the wine to the saucepan, including the ginger wine. Slowly heat until it is ready to serve. If you want to save some for later you can allow the syrup to cool and bottle it for later.

  3. Garnish with slices of orange and serve.

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