We’ve had a few food posts and now the most important aspect. Alcohol. I am kidding. There are other more important things (family, togetherness…) but everyone loves the booze. I’ve collected a few recipes (from BBC – I’m predictable) and I’m going to share them. Also, I haven’t tried any of these YET so I claim no responsibility for the state you may get yourself in.
The classic. My Dad’s in charge of mulled wine in our house and I’m not exactly sure what goes into it… This recipe seems pretty likely though:
½ bottle red wine
1 cinnamon stick
2 star anise
1 orange, sliced
1 lemon, sliced
50g/1¾oz brown sugar
Place all of the ingredients into a saucepan and simmer gently for 6-8 minutes, without boiling.
To serve, pour the mulled wine into heatproof glasses.
I have never tried egg nog but they seem to be obsessed with it in America. Or from what I’ve gathered from watching American sitcoms. Maybe this year I’ll actually try it. Ignoring the fact that milk based cocktails and creamy drinks make me feel ill…
1140ml/2 pints whole milk
6 free-range eggs
50g/2oz caster sugar
1 vanilla pod, split
20 fresh cherries, stones removed and halved
200ml/7fl oz brandy
cocoa powder, for dusting
- Place the milk, eggs, sugar and vanilla pod in a medium pan and heat gently, without boiling, until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon.
- The egg nog can be chilled at this stage or served hot.
- To serve, scatter the cherries in the bottom of each serving glass. Divide the brandy between the glasses and pour the egg nog over. Dust with cocoa powder and serve.
Sloe Gin Fizz
I’ve recently discovered a love of sloe gin and this sounds interesting – plus I’m sure we have some cream soda lying around. Easiest cocktails to make are the ones where you already have all the ingredients you need.
ice, as needed
50ml/1¾fl oz sloe gin
squeeze lemon juice
1 tsp sugar syrup (also sold as gomme syrup)
cream soda, to top up
1 sprig fresh mint
- Fill a highball glass with ice. Pour in the gin, lemon juice and sugar syrup and stir well. Top up with cream soda.
- Garnish with a blackberry and a sprig of mint. Serve.
After our visit to the Bond exhibition at the Barbican, we partook in martinis at the bar. I haven’t had one since – one reason being we don’t have any martini glasses. But this reminds me and I’d be tempted.
15ml/½fl oz vermouth
60ml/2fl oz Tyrrells potato vodka, or other potato vodka
twist lemon peel, to garnish
- Pour the vermouth and vodka into a mixing glass and fill with ice cubes. Stir well (or shake, if you want to channel Mr Bond) and then strain into a small Martini glass.
- Garnish with a twist of lemon peel and serve.
Here’s a drink I have had. At a bar/club of all places. I love coffee. I like alcohol. I really want to try it again. But I’d need to get the herb-flavoured anise…
50ml/2fl oz vodka
25ml/1fl oz Galliano, or similar anise and herb-flavoured liqueur
1 tsp sugar syrup
25ml/1fl oz freshly brewed coffee
3 coffee beans, for garnish
- Place the vodka, liqueur, sugar syrup and fresh coffee in a cocktail shaker with a handful of ice and shake hard.
- Strain into a martini glass and garnish with three coffee beans.
Or there’s another recipe I’ve found that uses Kahlua.
38ml/1.5 oz Kahlua
25ml/1 oz Absolut Vodka
25ml/1 oz Freshly brewed espresso
Add all the ingredients to a shaker and fill with ice. Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled Martini glass.
Merry Christmas and happy drinking!