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Recipe: Spiced Wine

Wine has some incredible health benefits, giving me an excuse to enjoy it frequently.  Actually, I suppose ‘frequently’ is a relative term.  I probably enjoy a glass of wine a few times a week, most often when I eat out.  Eating out gives me a great opportunity to try a variety of wines, some that I would never think to buy or know to buy.  Usually, I pick a wine by its label.  Not exactly rocket science. Or, even science really.

Either way, a great opportunity to experiment with wine at home is with spiced wines.  One of my favorite New York Vineyards, Osprey’s Dominion ($12), offers a spiced wine, intended to be heated and it comes with directions.  I think it’s affordable and delicious.  A note to those who purchase it: when you re-cork it to heat it, do not push the cork in far AT ALL.  Barely reset it in the neck of the bottle.

However, if you want to make your own spiced wine, here’s my recipe that’ll work with any light bodied (like Beaujolais Nouveau).

Spiced Wine

Makes 8 glasses of wine

  • 2 bottles red wine
  • 1 orange, zested and sliced
  • 1 lemon, zested and sliced
  • 3 whole black peppercorns
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 whole cardamom pods
  • 3 whole star anise
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • Up to 5 tablespoons sugar (though I use about 2 tablespoons)); the sweeter you like your spiced wine, the more you add

Combine all ingredients (other than the slices of fruit) in a medium saucepan.  Bring to a slow simmer over low heat.  Stir occasionally; when the sugar has dissolved, remove from the heat and serve with fruit slices as garnish.

Let’s be honest.  It’s wine.  It’s got carbohydrate and not much else.  All wines are about 125 calories per 5 ounce glass.

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