If you've never made a big pot of gluhwein on a frosty night in December, then you have really been missing out. It's as Christmassy as Bing Crosby and snow covered pine trees.
We have 2 brothers that live in Austria and they often give us inspiration in our cooking and baking. In fact, they are also amazing cooks and we are trying to get them to start a food blog: The cookery husband. Haha.
Well, anyway they taught us how to make some really good mulled wine. Or as you say in german, gluhwein.
Really, there is no secret to making it. You just throw a bunch of stuff in a pot and let it simmer.
As long as you get the basic ingredients in there, the possibilities are endless and you really can't "ruin" it.
So I will give you a list of ingredients to start with.
If you want to add more or less of these things, do it.
Always taste test. Do you like it sweeter? Add more sugar. Do you want a little more zip? Add some rum. Do you like more of a citrus pop or apple flavor? Add a bit of bottled apple or orange juice. ETC.
Just try adding different things that sound good. Don't even measure, just toss it into the pot. It's so exhilarating. A little of this, a litle of that. Let loose!
Here is my basic recipe and I think it is pretty darn good as is. But if i'm in the mood I might try different things. Do you get the idea?
A crock pot also works well to keep it hot, especially for parties.
As for the spice tea bags, we use these but if you can't find that particular kind just use any berry tea or something with similair spices. Around this time of year it is pretty easy to find mulling spices too.
You will need:
2 tea bags
2 cups water
1/2 cup cranberries (totally optional but very pretty)
2 cinnamon sticks
1/4 cup sugar
1 bottle dry red wine (I use cabernet sauvignon)
Cut up the lemons and oranges. Squeeze the juice into a stock pot and toss the rinds in as well.
Add the water, tea bags, apple, sugar and cinnamon sticks. (cranberries if using)
Let simmer on low heat for 30 minutes.
Remove the tea bags. Add one bottle of wine. Bring to a low simmer, do not boil.
Taste it. How does it taste? What does it need?
It's perfect? OK! Grab your favorite Christmas mug and dive in.