Winter is the perfect time of year to try some new flavours, mix up your choices and celebrate all the flavours of Christmas in a drink. The Sphinx have rounded the best cocktails and mocktails that brings together the taste of Christmas to your holiday beverage.
1. White Mulled Wine (10 glasses) – Fed up of the classic mulled wine which is too rich? Try this alternative using white wine and floral essences for a lighter drink.
Ingredients: 2 bottles cheap white wine – medium-dry is good, 500ml bottle light cider, 150ml elderflower cordial, zest 2 lemons (pared into strips using a vegetable peeler), 2 cinnamon sticks, 1 vanilla pod split and 4-5 tbsp caster sugar.
Method: Simply throw all the ingredients into a pan and heat until steaming but not boiling. Ladle into mugs or glasses to serve, while you keep the rest warm on a low heat.
2. Teetotal Mulled Wine (serves 6) – Enjoy all the taste of mulled wine, just without the alcohol.
Ingredients: 500ml pomegranate juice, 25g golden caster sugar, handful of frozen blackberries, 250ml apple juice, 1 cinnamon stick, 1 star anise, 4 cloves, 3 black peppercorns and 1 orange quartered.
Method: Again, simply throw in all the ingredients into a pan and heat until steaming but not boiling. Taste for sweetness, then strain into heatproof glasses.
3. Fizzy Raspberry Martini (serves 8) – Make a cocktail your party guests will remember. Combining prosecco, gin and berries.
Ingredients: 350ml Martini Rosso, 150ml gin, 4 tsp icing sugar, 24 frozen raspberries and 2 bottles chilled prosecco/sparkling wine.
Method: Firstly, mix the martini and gin together and chill or store in a bottle if making ahead. When just about to serve, spoon ½ tsp icing sugar into 8 Champagne glasses. Pour the Martini mixture into the glass, mix with a spoon and add the frozen raspberries. Top up with the prosecco/sparkling wine just before serving.
4. Alcohol free Orange and Cranberry Spritz (serves 4) – The fruitiest non-alcoholic beverage anyone can enjoy.
Ingredients: 500ml orange juice, 500ml cranberry juice and 400ml sparkling elderflower drink.
Method: Mix together orange juice and cranberry juice in a large jug. Slowly pour in the sparkling elderflower drink, as it will fizz up. Mix together and serve in tall glasses with ice.
5. Christmas Cosmopolitan (serves 10) – A festive twist on a classic cocktail combines ginger and cranberry to make the tasty tipple.
Ingredients: 500ml vodka, 500ml ginger wine, 1l cranberry juice, juice 5 limes and sliced stem ginger.
Method: Mix the vodka and ginger wine in a jug. Stir in the cranberry juice, lime juice and some sliced stem ginger.
6. Salted Caramel Rum Hot Chocolate (serves 4) – What better way to warm up your winter evening than with a sweet, boozy mug of chocolaty goodness?
Ingredients: 25ml dark rum, 2 tsp dulce de leche or thick caramel, 150ml whole milk and 50g milk chocolate – chopped.
Method: In a small bowl, mix together the rum and the dulce de leche until smooth then set aside. Warm the milk in a saucepan over a medium heat until simmering. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate and stir until melted. Pop the pan back on the heat until warm then add the rum mixture and a pinch of flaky sea salt. Pour into a mug and serve.
7. Hot Non Alcoholic Apple Pie Punch (serves 8) – If you’re after a warming booze-free alternative, try this hot apple drink, spiced with cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg.
Ingredients: 1½ tsp ground cinnamon, a good pinch ground cloves, ½ whole grated nutmeg, 2l apple juice, 2 tsp vanilla extract and 6 scoops vanilla ice cream.
Method: Put the cinnamon, ground cloves, nutmeg, apple juice and vanilla extract in a large saucepan. Bring to a gentle simmer. When the apple juice has warmed through, add the vanilla ice cream and whisk vigorously with a balloon whisk until melted and combined with the hot apple juice – the ice cream should make a frothy top on the juice. Serve in glasses.
Recipes from BBC Good Food.
Featured image: https://www.maxim.com/entertainment/3-ingredient-cocktails-2017-10