Happy 2014, everyone! I hope you all had a great time ringing in the new year. Me? I danced all night after going to dinner with my folks. Aaaaand I contracted what I can only assume is a fatal strand of swine flu since I’ve been in a sneezy, zombie-like state ever since. Fun times! And the constantly changing temperature hasn’t helped me recover either. Seriously, negative degrees today? It’s crazy! This weather makes me want to stay home and sip a warm drink. Like this mulled juice recipe.
You always hear about mulled wine, a perfect winter beverage that’s warm and spiced with delicious seasonal spices. I even contributed a mulled wine recipe as a guest post to JennifHsieh (definitely check out her site; she’s a great gal and terrifically talented blogger). Although many of us may initially choose to sip some wine, I firmly believe that it’s always good to have a nonalcoholic version of your favorite drink handy. This is especially true if you have kids or if you want to enjoy a fancy drink before it’s socially acceptable to kick one back. So why not mull some juice, right? It’s the ideal virgin cocktail for winter.
A mix of grape and apple juices make the base of this mulled juice. Then all the traditional mulled spices (orange, star anise, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves) are used….but just a bit of each. Since I made this recipe with kids in mind, I figured a lightly spiced drink would be best. It only takes 10 minutes on the stove before you have warm juice that’s speckled with earthly, comforting spices. It’s sweet and tastes so good! Perfection in a cup on a negative degree day. Enjoy! :)
**Makes 4 servings**
3 1/2 cups grape juice
1 3/4 cups apple juice
1/2 orange (zested and juice)
2 cinnamon sticks
2 whole cloves
2 star anise
1 nutmeg (crushed)
1 tablespoon honey
Place all ingredients into a medium pot. Feel free to add in the orange for extra flavor after it’s been juiced and zested. Bring mixture to a boil.
Reduce heat to low, and simmer for 10-15 minutes.
Cool slightly and strain into glasses.
Garnish with an orange wedge.
Serve and enjoy!