Mulled wine at +18 degrees Celsius isn’t the brightest of ideas.
But when I initially thought of the idea to serve mulled wine at our Advent wreath Pantarul workshop, it seemed splendid – Christmassy, romatic and just right. Tough luck. The weather forecast doesn’t care for romance.
At the workshop we had tea and th e odd glass of wine, which means that my mulling syrup is hidden away in the dark of our fridge, waiting for colder days to come.
But the fact that we didn’t have mulled wine at the workshop doesn’t mean you won’t. And it doesn’t mean that I didn’t have a sip or two while I was brushing up my wreath. At the moment I’m not in the mood for Christmas red so I removed the candles, added some more branches where branches were needed and tied a pale blue linen bow. With fairy lights and a few neutral ornaments here and there in our apartment, the wreath will be just right.
And so will these gorgeous Marinski mugs. I am preparing two beautiful gourmet boxes for Pantarul – they should be ready just in time for Christmas gift season – and these mugs are one of the featured products. Marina, the artist, decorated them based on the illustrations we have on the walls in the restaurant. Of course, I couldn’t resist adding a couple to our home collection too (I like to think it’s a necessity when you’re in my line of work).
And regarding mulled wine, here’s a recipe I adore because you can make a large batch in advance and then use it as you need it.
The quantitiies listed are enough for 6 bottles of wine – you can reduce the quantities or even double them if necessary.
- 600 g sugar
- 300 ml red wine
- juice and peel of 6 clementines
- peel of 2 lemons
- fresh vanilly pod, halved lengthwise or 2 sachets of strong-flavored vanilla sugar svježa i prepolovljena mahuna
- 3 cinnamon sticks
- 3 fresh bay leaves
- 10 black pepper pods
- 8 allspice berries
- 8 cloves (whole)
- 4 star anise
- 6 cardamom pods
Place all the ingredients in a large pot and bring the mixture to a boil. Cook for 3 to 4 more minutes and you will get a beautiful, thick syrup.
Pour it into sterilized jars or bottles while it’s still hot. Seal the jars, let the syrup cool to room temperature and then keep int in the fridge.
When it’s time to mull the wine, first heat the syrup thoroughly and only then add the wine. Do not let it boil or all the alcohol will evaporate (and we don’t want that to happen, right?)
If you’re looking for visual appeal in the cup, you can sprinkle the top with some slivered almonds or add some of the spices.