Normally at this time of year the experts at mobile event catering, Essex based caterers Plenty of Thyme, would be busy catering for Christmas parties all over the county. But with COVID-19 having decimated the hospitality industry, including mobile event catering, Essex event caterers Plenty of Thyme have been unable to offer our delicious festive food and drink as we normally would have at this time of year!
So, in the spirit of Christmas, we have decided to share our amazing recipe for mulled wine, so you can all still enjoy the taste of Christmas from the comfort of your own home!
But before we divulge our secrets, let us ask…what is mulled wine and where did it come from?
Mulled wine, in its simplest form, is basically warmed red wine, infused with spices and fruit. It can also include other spirits, such as rum, brandy, gin, or even vodka.
Where did it come from? Well, although mulled wine is now almost exclusively associated with Christmas, it originated from soldiers from the Roman legions of the 2nd Century. These legionnaires began heating their wineskins to help keep them warm throughout the bitterly cold winter months. With the expansion of the Roman Empire throughout Europe, the knowledge of mulled wine spread and it became a very popular Winter drink throughout Europe. In fact, mulled wine was believed at the time to ward off disease and illness! As time wore on other ingredients and spices were added to the wine, which eventually led to the drink we know and love today. You can read more on the origins of mulled wine here.
So, without further ado…here is Plenty of Thyme’s AMAZING mulled wine recipe!
Ingredients (serves 10)
- 3 tangerines
- 1 lemon
- 200g caster sugar
- 6 whole cloves
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 3 fresh bay leaves
- 1 vanilla pod
- 2 star anise
- Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
- 2 750ml bottles of red wine
- 200ml of brandy
- Orange slices
- Flaked almonds
- Peel the tangerines and cut each tangerine into 3 or 4 slices. Grate the lemon peel into a fine zest. Add to a large saucepan along with the cloves, cinnamon sticks, bay leaves, vanilla pod (split lengthwise), star anise, and nutmeg. Stir in the sugar and slowly pour the wine and brandy onto the mixture, over a low heat. Gently bring the pan to a simmer and occasionally stir over a low heat and keep simmering for the next 15-20 minutes.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat and allow the flavours to blend for at least 3-4 hours. When ready to serve, heat the mulled wine gently through (without boiling!), then strain the resulting liquid into a serving jug, ensuring the leftover spices do not spill into the jug.
- Ladle into serving mugs, and garnish with orange slices, raisins, flaked almonds and leftover cinnamon sticks.
By following this simple recipe, masters at mobile event catering, Essex based Plenty of Thyme guarantee you will have the perfect mulled wine to wow your household with this Christmas!
We hope that this has been helpful to you all, the team at Plenty of Thyme would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!! And remember, should you wish to book Plenty of Thyme for your future event you can contact the team here.
Merry Christmas everybody!!