For a while now I have been trying to work out how I would manage to include all of my recipes that I wanted to post in the run-up to Christmas as there are a few (!), so I decided to start my very own 12 Days of Christmas! My version however will run from December 13th and will finish just in time for the big day with the last post on December 24th, Christmas Eve. Each day will feature a new recipe, sometimes a few recipes, but they are all some of my favourite things to have at Christmas time. There is a mix of drinks, starters, desserts and of course a baking recipe or two, one thing you won't find however is a partridge or a pear tree!
So let's get into the Christmas spirit and get the party started with a few ideas to help bring in that festive cheer!
Ok, so this is by far one of my favourite drinks ever! Think Pomegranate Cosmopolitan mixed not with vodka but with some Prosecco! This is so Christmassy it would even get Scrooge in the mood for some festive fun!!
250ml pomegranate juice, chilled*
125ml Cointreau or Grand Marnier
Squeeze of lime juice (just a spritz)
1 bottle of Prosecco, chilled
In a large pitcher or jug mix the pomegranate juice, cointreau and lime juice. Keep cold until ready to serve then when you are ready to share some Christmas sparkle pop open the Prosecco and add to the other ingredients. Give a quick stir then carefully pour into some champagne glasses then toast the night away!
*When I made this recently to take photographs I couldn't get any plain pomegranate juice so I used a pomegranate and cranberry mix which was just as delicious so feel free to change things around a little!
I make this drink all the time when I have parties as it is delicious as a mocktail for all the drivers and non-drinkers but can be turned in a moments notice to a delicious cocktail with the addition of some good old vodka. Just make sure that if you make 2 batches you don't get them mixed up!
1 litre Cranberry Juice, chilled
juice of 2-3 limes, plus some extra lime slices
500ml Ginger ale, chilled
500ml Vodka (optional)
Pour the cranberry juice and lime juice into a large jug or punch bowl and if using add the vodka. Just before serving add the ginger ale, lime slices and lots of ice then serve at once so it has plenty of fizz!
This is not perhaps the most traditional way of making mulled wine but by making a sugar syrup first that is infused with all of the Christmas deliciousness, you get all of the flavour without having to boil off all of the alcohol from the wine – result!
125g caster (super fine) sugar
2 tangerines, peel removed in thick pieces with a vegetable peeler
2 cinnamon sticks
1 vanilla pod, sliced in half lengthwise
1 bottle of red wine (something you like to drink)
Put the sugar and water in a small pan along with the tangerine peel, cloves, cinnamon sticks and the vanilla pod. Cook over a gentle heat stirring from time to time until the sugar has completely dissolved then allow to simmer for a good 10 minutes or so until all of the flavours really get concentrated into the syrup. Cut the tangerines in half then add to a larger pan along with the bottle of wine then add as much syrup as you like depending on how sweet you like your mulled wine. Stir well and allow the wine to gently warm, then ladle into heat resistant glasses, sip and enjoy!