Mulled wine is a tasty beverage that is composed of red wine combined with different kinds of raisins, fruits and other mulling spices. Even before, wine is a famous beverage and was commonly heated and spiced. It has a very long history and believed to provide essential nutrients that are healthy for the body. This tradition can be dated back to the medieval times where drinking of wine became widespread and became the interest of many. It became very popular especially during the winter seasons.
Tradition of non-alcoholic mulled wine
Different cultures have been a tradition to make mulled wines that is usually served hot. Some people who have different culture could be not so familiar with mulled wines, but it is one of the must try beverages. To save wines that are not very tasty, strong flavors are added. Mulled wines are always present in different Christmas celebrations and ones the tempting aroma of mulled wine is spreading in the house it is the scent of the yuletide season. The holiday is perfectly celebrated while relaxing in a comfortable chair and sipping a hot and freshly made mulled wine. It has been a favorite drink in every holiday parties to warm up the body because of its appetizing aroma. Different localities and culture have provided and made a lot of kinds and ingredients of the mulled wine. Depending on one’s taste and imagination a lot mulled wine are available and it can be experimented in order to get the desired combinations.
Non-Alcoholic Mulled Wine and its health benefits
Traditional herbal medicine are soaked in wines in order to bring to the surface its active ingredients and properties. These kinds of drinks are a potent medicine that is so-called tincture. Mulled wine is a mixture of tincture and infusion which are brewed for a minute. The herbs contained are advisable to achieve good blood circulation and improves digestion. Different variations in mulled wines are popular in different parts of the world for over thousands of years. In history, wines are added with honey and many spices in order to gain its taste and flavor.
Gluhwein is a famous variation which is made in different German-speaking nations. It is made with heated and spiced red wine and combined with vanilla pods, citrus, cloves, cinnamon sticks and sugar. In other version, mulled wines are combined with some almonds and a little raisins. Instead of grapes, other kinds of fruit are used in making wines like cherry and blueberry. There are alcoholic versions of mulled wine but for some who are not used to alcoholic ones there are available nonalcoholic wines. There are some that can be bought which are already prepared together with fruit juices. In its servings, it is typically found together with bread and other buns. In some places it is complemented with rice pudding. There are variations that includes white wine and sweet wine. To eliminate the alcohol content other fruit juices are used or the mixture is boiled to release the alcohol.
The most common ingredients of mulled wine and its benefits to health are the following:
Honey – It is a natural and organic antibiotic that are filled with good bacteria. They also help in activating medicinal properties of various herbal medicines.
Cinnamon – This helps in warming up the digestive tract and organs and other extremities. It also makes digestion easier and lowers down blood sugar level.
Orange Peel – It can improve the immune system and contains a lot of Vitamin C.
Juniper berries – Just like the other berries, it is rich in antioxidants and contributes in getting a healthy bladder.
Cloves – Cloves can help in improving circulation and they are effective in removing parasitic worms that could live in the gut.
Ginger – This ingredient helps in enhancing the appetite, digestion and circulation.
Cardamom – It is an important digestive tonic and strengthens the digestive system.
There are different techniques in preparing a mulled wine and each of them have various ingredients. The first thing to do in preparing the wine is to place just every bit of spices into the saucepan with water and heat it in a low fire for 10-15 minutes. After heating, take it off and stay the flavors so that it would be infused for about an hour. It is recommended not to let the mixture boil for it could affect the wine’s flavor and aroma. The boiling point of water is generally higher than the other ingredients; therefore the taste is reduced if it reaches this point. Depending on the type of liquid being mulled, you can choose the different spices that are prepared prior to cooking. It is important to know the characteristics of each spice to determine the right amount to include. Some spices may elicit too much strong flavor that they should be used sparingly. Citrus can also add the quality and flavor like oranges and lemons. Add some granulated sugar for the recipe for additional sweetness.
Aside from the usual red wine, there are other kinds of drinks that could be fit in mulling. Cider can be used, but it is important to take note to avoid the fizzy bottled type and differ the spices to be mixed up.
Keeping a ready-made spiced syrup can also be helpful to avoid rushing things out. It is made simply by combining sugar and spices with water and let it simmer down for about 20 minutes. When it has cooled down, strain it by the use of sieve and place it on sterilized bottles to avoid being contaminated. It depends on the person whether how sweet it could be and the spices to be included. The syrup can last and be stored for three months.
Preparing different recipes of mulled depends upon the taste and preference of a person. Measuring the right proportions of the ingredients can be a difficult task because a certain quantity may not match a person’s taste. Common mulled wines are prepared through boiling spices in water where the flavor is extracted. Wine and certain amount of sugar is then added and heated until it boil down. It is now served with a dry toast or chips and biscuit. Usually, the spices which are used are cloves, cinnamon, mace and grated nutmeg. Whichever type of wine can be mulled but commonly, the claret and the port are chosen. The container where it is prepared and boiled should be kept clean and used only for the same purpose. Unclean pans can spoil the wine which could result to a distasteful flavor. Preparations of mulled wine comes in different techniques. The most common is the infusion of different spices in a given period of time like this one.
If you don’t want to go through all the troubles in making one, there are markets that sells mulled wine which are ready to be consumed and available in containers. They could just be heated before consuming. There are many people who has personalized recipes for mulled wine that suits their tasting needs. Perfect for the cold winter, mulled wine can also be given as gifts to your grandparents for the season. It is perfect in warming up from the cold breeze and lightening up the mood during the holiday seasons.