Although mulled wine is a traditional UK Christmas drink, the ingredients of mulled wine are sourced from all around the world.
Containing spices from the Far East, fruit from the Mediterranean, and imported wine, the history of mulled wine is related to the growth of the spice trade.
Using the freshest ingredients will greatly improve its taste.
Watch How To Make Mulled Wine
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Buy the biggest, juiciest oranges you can find and stud with cloves. Pushing the cloves into the oranges helps release the flavour of the oranges and prevents the cloves floating loose in the wine. Slice two more oranges into thick slices, and do the same with two large lemons.
Find a big saucepan, ideally with a lid, and pour in two bottles of strong red wine. Reuse the wine bottles to measure an equal quantity of water and pour into the pan.
To the diluted wine, add several spoonfuls of the sweetest honey. The recipe provides a suggested amount of honey, but sweeten according to your taste.
I much prefer using fresh cinnamon sticks over ground cinnamon, and these need to be added to the pan. Take a good chunk of root ginger, peel before grating finely, and add this to the wine together with the oranges studded with cloves. Finish the preparation by adding the thinly sliced oranges and lemons.
All the ingredients should now be in the pan. The mulled wine is now a glorious combination of colours, smells, and fruit. Give the mixture a really good stir and cover with a lid to allow the spices and juice from the fruit to infuse into the wine, leaving overnight if possible.
The final step of preparation is heating the wine over a low to medium heat just before you want to serve it. Stir frequently and watch that the mulled wine does not start to boil. After about 30 minutes the wine should be hot and ready to serve.
Some people may prefer to sieve the wine to remove any floating bits of fruit and spices, but I like it just the way it is. Enjoy – and please note the wine will contain alcohol.