Winter Warmers for the Cold Season
Got cold in your bones that just won't shift? (Bit dramatic for the UK, I know. Play along, please). Maybe you just need a mug of something warm to thaw your fingers? A good glug of something hot and delicious to lift wet-winter blues? We got you, homies. Read on for Christmas drinkies that Father C. would dive head-first down the chimney for.
|Image courtesy of Jamie Oliver's website|
Marvellous Mulled Wine
This recipe comes courtesy of the GB food guru himself, Jamie Oliver. He asks you to make your own spicy, orangey mix yourself, but if you're not into that, you can buy mulled wine mixes from pretty much anywhere. This recipe serves about 10.
- Peel 2 clementines, 1 lime and 1 lemon
- Put 200g caster sugar into a large pan over a medium heat, then add the peels and the juice of both clementines
- Add 6 whole cloves, 1 cinnamon stick and 3 fresh bay leaves to the mix. Grate in 10-12 gratings' worth of nutmeg (or use a teaspoons ground nutmeg) and halve a vanilla pod lengthways and add to the pan
- Pour in just enough red wine to cover the sugar (Jamie recommends an Italian wine such as Chianti) and stir well. 2 bottles of red wine are required for this recipe
- Let the mixture simmer until the sugar has dissolved, then bring to the boil. Keep it boiling for 4-5 minutes, or until you have a "beautiful thick syrup". As Jamie says, creating this syrup will help the ingredients to blend well with the wine, while the heat of the syrup will ensure most of the alcohol is persuaded to leave the rest of the wine when it's added
- When you're syrup is lovely and thick, turn the heat down to low and add 2 star anise and the rest of your wine
- Gently heat the whole lovely lot until it's "warm and delicious", then serve in heat-proof glasses
|Image courtesy of Café Delites blog|
Cheeky Hot Chocolate
Our Nutella Hot Chocolate recipe is adapted from a blog called cafedelights, run by a very lovely Australian.
- Heat 1 litre of milk in a medium-sized saucepan on a medium-high heat until steaming
- Add 2 tablespoons of Nutella or a similar chocolate hazelnut spread, 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder and 2 tablespoons of sugar or another sweetener. Whisk the mixture until combined and dissolved
- Bring to a simmer and then remove from the heat
- Serve the hot chocolate with your choice of toppings, if using. This could be: a healthy dollop of Nutella, a few mini-marshmallows, chocolate chips or crushed hazelnuts. Up to you!
|Image courtesy of Tasty Yummies blog|
Egg-cellent Vegan Eggnog
Yes, it's possible. Yes, you may be amazed! But don't take our word for it— make it yourself! Thanks to the Tasty Yummies blog for this recipe.
- 470ml cashew milk, or other non-dairy milk of choice
- 115ml coconut milk
- 4-6 Medjool dates
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
pinch of ground cinnamon
- pinch of ground cloves
- pinch of salt
It's just a matter of chucking all the above ingredients in the blender and off you go! Let us know how it turns out!
Mmm, Mince Pies
Such a classic deserves a place on every Christmas recipe list. Here's Nigel Slater's recipe for "perfect" mince pies. The recipe's a bit long to include here, but follow the link to view it in full.
Happy making and baking folks! Please get in touch with pics of your delicious drinks and pies, we'd love to see them!