Baking and Simmering
The weather outside is frightful. Dreadful, really. Right now it's about 4 degrees, and despite the beautiful blanket of snow on the ground, I'm especially grateful to be indoors. And baking. The two week countdown to Christmas is on, so it's time to pull out
the cookie recipes of Christmases past and get to work measuring,
mixing, and rolling.
First, though, I'll need to do a bit of simmering–mulled wine, that is.
|Red Wine Info
Grape Rhône blend
Food Pairing roast chicken, hamburgers, grilled vegetables, cookie dough
|Mulled Wine Recipe
(adapted from Gourmet Magazine) 2 bottles of dry red wine (like a Côtes du Rhône)
8 whole cloves
4 whole black peppercorns
4 strips lemon zest
4 strips orange zest
1/4 cup brandy
1 1/2 cups water
1/4 to 3/4 cup sugar (adjust to taste)
1 cinnamon stick
Tie spices and zest in a bag of cheesecloth (or fish them out of the wine later, like I did). Combine all ingredients in a saucepan, bring to a boil, then simmer for 10 minutes. Serve warm.
Long ago, mixing wine with spices and sweeteners was a way to disguise
the taste of spoiled wine. Today, it's simply a great way to warm the
house–and the belly–during the holidays. But don't bother spending a
lot of money on a great bottle of red wine. (The Côtes du Rhône I used was under $10.) After you create your
concoction, you won't be able to tell the difference.
Mmmm. Mulled wine and raw cookie dough—now there's a pairing that's sure to bring some holiday cheers.
is a contributing writer at Thursday Happy Hour. Check out her
lifestyle wine column here on Wednesdays. What's your favorite holiday wine? Let Diane know in the comments below. Or chat with her on Facebook.