With the passing of Halloween, we find ourselves looking to Christmas. A distant dream in this bleak world of overbearing assignments and deadlines. To this end, I like to make sure I’m keeping the spirit of Christmas alive. Not only by believing in Santa Claus, but by hosting friends and family for festive drinks.
When I think of Christmas drinks, I turn to mulled cider. Traditionally made with dry ciders, I thought it best to innovate with Strongbow Dark Fruits: The lifeblood of any respectable student accommodation. I chose ingredients that were (for the most part) readily available around the house. To little surprise, there was plenty of Dark Fruits to spare. Finally, following a bit of experimentation and several drinks later, we came up with a spicy concoction to tickle the taste buds of all around.
What you’ll need
3x 440ml cans of Dark Fruits
75ml of whiskey (I recommend using Bourbon but any whiskey should do)
(You can of course substitute these for an alcohol free alternative if you are so inclined.
This would still be just as festive if
substituted for cranberry juice)
250ml of apple juice
The zest of one orange
2 thick slices of said orange
Half of a ground nutmeg (one lump teaspoon if pre-ground)
4 cinnamon sticks (one lump tablespoon if
2 teaspoons of cloves
These measurements serve 5 people so multiply as necessary to accommodate bigger parties!
It couldn’t be simpler. Grab a large saucepan and combine all the ingredients. Give it a little stir and bring the whole affair up to high heat, then dropping to medium low once the bubbles begin to appear. Leave to simmer for at least half an hour, occasionally stirring the mixture. This lets all the flavours get to know each other and can only be improved by leaving it to simmer longer. Be sure not to boil it less you want a thick syrupy mess!
Straining the drink through a sieve is advised to remove any of the bits, return them back to the saucepan. Naturally, this drink is best served hot, and for some artistic flair you could garnish with a slice of orange.
A warm way to refresh yourself and boost morale, as well as a good excuse to bring the house together.
Happy drink making to one and all!
by Joshua Cole