Tis the season of delicious sippers and boozy treats. One of my faves is definitely mulled wine, but I find it’s just too damn sweet (I’ve found recipes that include 2 cups of sugar per jug!! YUCK), and sure, it’s nice to sip a couple of glasses, but after that I get a nasty headache and I feel thirsty as heck (and not in a sex-craved kinda way haha).
My coworkers and I were thinking “can we leave the sugar out?” and the answer is yes. So I thought of making a winter sangria instead of mulled wine – the principle is the same; spices and hot wine – but the difference is in the fruit. The secret to make it sweet sans all the added sugar is to roast your fruit, that way you get all the natural occurring sugars out. If you need an extra boost of sweetness you can always add extra apple cider (all-natural). Not bad huh?!
You can find the full recipe to make it at the end of Luvo’s cocktail guide to healthy sippers (or below).
Oh, and there’s some cool tips on keeping your booze “healthy” this season, so definitely check out the post (and you guessed well, the photos and recipe is by yours truly). Enjoy!
½ cup figs, cut in quarters
2 pears (any kind works, just make sure they’re not too ripe)
2 apples (we like ambrosia, but you can use any other type)
1 bottle dry red wine
1 star anise seed
1 cinnamon stick
All natural apple cider (not from concentrate)
Pomegranate seeds (optional)
Preheat the oven at 400F
Core the pears and apples and cut into small cubes (leave the skins on). Wash the orange and figs and cut in small segments (also with skin on). Place the apples, pears, orange and fig segments on a baking sheet with parchment paper and roast for 20-25 minutes, until juices started to come out and they have browned a bit. Be sure to not overcook the fruit (it’ll break apart in the drink). Remove the fruit, let it cool down on the tray.
In a big jug pour ¾ of the bottle of wine, all the roasted fruit (including any juices that might have dripped onto the tray), and throw in the anise seed, cinnamon stick, and cloves. Top with ½ cup of apple cider and taste for sweetness (keep in mind it’ll get sweeter as fruit sits in the mix). Let the sangria sit in the fridge for at least 2 hours for flavours to develop.
When you’re ready to serve, pour the sangria as is and garnish with an orange twist, or, if you want it warm simply heat it up in the stove by bringing it to a simmer (don’t boil it).
Add pomegranate seeds JUST as you are about to serve it, otherwise they will shrivel. Enjoy!