This is a case of the more the merrier. Think Victorian living rooms with burgundy flock wallpaper patterns and more chintz and china than you can shake a candelabra at, put EVERYTHING in this concoction. Clove up that orange with any delightful pattern your mind can imagine! The more cinnamon the better! Also I have a sweet tooth so I suggest you sugarplum fairy this bad boy up as much as possible.
Cloves - as many as you can sink an orange with or to taste.
One orange - to skim the zest off a bit
Do you like ginger? Add some root ginger too!
4 cinnamon sticks
Pop ingredients in to a pan with two glasses of water (maybe not your cloved orange - just cloves and zest for now, add the big decorated orange when serving to totally wowed guests). Stir on a very low heat for 20 minutes until you have a syrup. Once that's done add red wine and mix it through, it should be nice and warm for serving. Fun mulling fact - the cloved orange is actually called a pomander and has an interesting history not only related to Victorians but ladies not wanting to smell bad, faaaascinating!
Dangerous Mulled Wine: Ghost of Christmas Rat-arsed
This one is definitely going to put a smile on the face on the Christmas party-pooping Scrooges. Drink too much and you'll be as white as a ghost the next day. How can you possibly make wine more delightful and well, intoxicating? Let's add some brandy! And that's all that's different about this "Dance with the devil in the blue moonlight" with sleigh bells on.
Mulled Devine: Christmas Cider/Apple Juice
Litre of cider or apple juice
2 cinnamon sticks
2 orange peels (why not peel them so they look like a long spiral!?)
Sweeten to taste with sugar, honey or your animal friendly alternative
So it's cold outside and you need warming, even with the heating on, you may be externally warmed but somehow it's not quite doing the trick. A hot percentage-fulled drink maybe? Well, just because it's a chilly Christmas doesn't mean you need to be on a boozy bender until 1st January. Give you liver and your non-drinking friends a break from your Christmas tipple overload and have some cosy Christmassy mulled apple juice instead! It's also quite good if you have kids who want to be involved in the Christmas activities usually only open to their rosy cheeked parents.
Just bung all the ingredients in a pot and heat through for 5 to 10 minutes. There is (like so many things in life) an alcoholic alternative. Just substitute the wholesome apple juice for its bad boy cousin cider and you're back on the ground, a face full of dust and the wagon disappearing into the distance without you.
Whatever you decide to drink this Christmas make sure you drink the purest and satisfying of drinks as a chaser. A pint of water goes a long way and will stop you from making the New Year's Resolution "I shall NEVER drink again!" Merry Christmas everyone - enjoy the festivities!