I just can’t wrap my head around the fact that Christmas is on Sunday already. You can probably blame it on the whirlwind trip to Malaysia that threw me out of wack and the fact that I barely slept in 4 days (btw thank you all for your votes and to Nuffnang for showing us a good time!). Not that I’m complaining of course but I had the biggest baking bug last week and I was itching to get back into it when I returned. Instead all I wanted to do was just sleep, snuggle with my dog in bed, tuck into the massive Malaysian snack haul that I lugged home and sleep some more.
This was the only thing I could muster during my zombie state. Yes ladies and gentlemen, it’s time that we talk about x-mas booze. No wait, talk is cheap. Just give me the booze, every last dizzying drop.
If Christmas could be pulverised into a beverage and slurped through a straw, it’d be a mulled wine, with its earthy spices, a tinge of citrus and the heat of red wine. But I’ve also been on a hot chocolate bender lately and this was a best-of-both-worlds recipe that I’ve been dying to try.
I know plenty of people who don’t care for mulled wine but mention ‘chocolate’ to them and they lose their marbles. This is taking hot chocolate to a whole new planet and the result is amazeballs – heady, ambrosial, fragrant, spicy and wonderfully warming. This is best drunk on a chilly day with clammy hands clasped tight around a steamy glass (hot cupping action oh yeah).
Truly an exquisite adults-only experience.
- 500ml water
- 400g caster sugar
- 100g cocoa powder
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 4 star anise
- 8 cloves
- 250g dark chocolate (about 70%), chopped
- 2 clementines, halved and thickly sliced (substitute with orange)
- 1 sprig of rosemary
- 1 x 750ml bottle of red wine (your choice)
- Place the water, sugar, cocoa, spices and chocolate in a pan and bring to a simmer. Remove from heat and whisk until it chocolate has melted and everything’s incorporated. Add clementines and rosemary and leave to infuse for 10 minutes. Add the red wine and warm through gently.
- Serve warm (not hot).
- Recipe adapted from Adventures with Chocolate by Paul A. Young