Hot Mulled Wine reminds me of Christmas, Madrigal dinners, and travel. The aroma of the simmering wine is wonderful and sipping it is even better. While my paternal line is Czech, mulled wine was not a tradition in our home.
Wishing you a Veselé Vánoce (Merry Christmas) andŠťastný Nový Rok! (Happy New Year)
2 bottles of red wine (we use Cabernet Sauvignon)
5-6 cinnamon sticks
6-8 whole cloves
4 whole black peppercorns
4 allspice berries
4-6 star anise
zest of one tangerine (use fruit)
zest of one lemon (discard fruit)
1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and chopped
1/3 cup raisins
tangerine slices from zested tangerine
2 apples, sliced (we used green apples)
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup raw honey
1 cup apple cider (optional)
2 Tbsp. Czech Rum (I used Cointreau)
Combine all ingredients in a simmering pot. Simmer until hot. Serve.
There are folks who ladle it into a cup, fruits and all, but we prefer to strain it and just serve the hot wine with a cinnamon stick in the cup as a garnish.
It is at it’s best when served immediately after mulling but this delicious drink will keep fairly hot even when taken off the heat for about 30 minutes. The leftover mulled wine (if you have any) can be reheated in a saucepan on the stovetop. If you wish to keep some for the next day, allow it to cool completely and then pour into glass bottle or mason jar, closing tightly and refrigerating.
Peppermint Mocha is my favorite coffee drink of the year but I rarely order it at Starbucks because it’s loaded with empty calories. After several years of using COFFEE-MATE Peppermint Mocha Sugar Free Coffee Creamer, I decided to try making my own Peppermint Mocha with the help of the internet. This was a great recipe that I’ll make again and again!
The second recipe is for a Pepper Mocha Creamer which is also good, but the first recipe is my favorite. For the creamer, I added a packet of Stevia to my coffee before using the creamer. The creamer is a little strong for my taste, but still good!
SKINNY PEPPERMINT MOCHA
2/3cupblack coffeebrewed, medium roast or coffee of choice 2/3cupunsweetened almond milk 1tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder 1packet stevia or sweetener of choice (I used 2 packets) 1/8tsppeppermint extract
Reddiwhipuse coconut for dairy free Cacao bites or sprinkles
Brew coffee, I used leftover coffee that I stored overnight in the refrigerator and warmed in the microwave.
In a small pot, combine milk, cocoa, stevia and peppermint extract.
Bring to medium heat for 2-3 minutes until cocoa powder dissolves and liquid becomes bubbly.
Pour into a large coffee cup with the coffee then use a handheld foamer to blend until it becomes frothy and foamy. Add additional toppings as desired and enjoy.
OR I heated all ingredients together and then poured in a coffee mug and topped with Coconut Reddiwhip. YUMMY!
Curling up by the fire with a good cup of coffee or hot chocolate is one of the things I look forward to as we approach the holidays and cold, snowy weather.
Last year, my daughter, Megan, introduced me to Fireside Coffee and I was a big fan. I kept a container ready all of last winter and will do the same this year. I made my Fireside Coffee with decafinated coffee so I could enjoy it day or evening.
What a wonderful gift this would be for neighbors and friends.
FIRESIDE COFFEE MIX
2 cups powdered cocoa mix (15 packets of Swiss Miss individual servings)
2 cups powdered coffee creamer
1 cup instant coffee (I used decaffinated)
1.5 cups sugar (I used 1.5 tablespoons of Stevia instead)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Mix ingredients well. Store in tins, jars, or plastic bags.
Mix 2 heaping tablespoons mix with 2/3 cup very hot water. Stir and enjoy!
How many ways are there to use Gooseberries? Not as many as one would think, at least not many that are documented. I’ve never tried a smoothie with gooseberries until I found this recipe. I substituted almond milk for cow’s milk. Very refreshing!
BLUEBERRY GOOSEBERRY YOGURT SMOOTHIE
1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
1/2 cup fresh or frozen gooseberries
1/2 of banana, frozen
1/2 cup lowfat vanilla yogurt (I prefer Greek yogurt)
1/2 cup almond milk
Put all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth. Enjoy!