One of my greatest joys at cold season is mulled wine. It sounds as "Glintvein" in Russian and it's just around you in the winter. Every single Moscow restaurant and cafe has it on the menu. Cooking magazines keep publishing mulled wine recipes. I absolutely associated it with Russian food before I went skiing to Austria and then to France and bumped into their "Glühwein" and "Vin chaud".
Whatever the origin of mulled wine, I just can't imagine Russian winter without it. It's easy to make and doesn't require much precision. So nobody follows any recipe and mulled wine just composes from spices, fruits and wine you have at hand. I also have my favorite version which I made at home yesterday and which I'm sharing with you.
Mulled wine Russian style
serves 4 if they don't drink too much
1 bottle of dry red wine (just decent wine, doesn't have to be spectacular)
200 gr red berries (it's raspberry this time, frozen - it's winter)
4 tbs honey
1-2 cinnamon sticks
2-4 stars of anise
5 cm piece of fresh ginger root
Slice the lemon and 1 orange. Using vegetable peeler take a strip of peel off the 2nd orange. Then squeeze the orange. Slice the ginger root and break the cinnamon sticks into large pieces. In a large pan combine orange slices, zest and juice with lemon slices, berries and spices.
Add the wine and set on medium heat.
Stir till the honey dissolves and bring to hot temperature. Don't let it boil though. Pour the mulled wine into classes or tea cups with a ladle and have fun. The amount of fun is directly linked to the number of glasses you drink. Seriously.
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