To warm myself up, I love the smells of a mulled cider in my kitchen! The cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg, star anise. Ahhhh...it's pure heaven.
I stumbled upon some rare blood oranges at Fairway and decided to grab a bunch. It was originally for a salad I was going to make. But I decided to sacrifice one of them to use in my updated cider.
For those of you who aren't familiar with a blood orange, you'll understand quickly enough how it got its name. On the outside, it looks like a plain orange. But once you cut it in half, the intense blood red color hits you. As you squeeze the juices, be prepared to have what looks like blood trickling through your fingers. It's a bit gory.
Having originated in the early 18th century in China and the Southern Mediterranean, blood oranges have a tart, bittersweet taste to it that reminds me of a mix between a grapefruit and orange. It is delicious! I also found out that they provide 28% of the recommended daily intake of dietary fiber.
Think of me while you happily drink this tonight! But be careful not to imbibe too much as it knocks a hidden punch. :)
MULLED BLOOD ORANGE-APPLE CIDER
1 1/2 cup apple cider
1 1/2 cup red wine (preferably Pinot noir or Merlot)
2 blood oranges, halved and juiced
1 tsp whole cardamom pods
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 freshly grated nutmeg
1 whole star anise
2-3 whole cloves
1. In a medium size pot, add cider, wine and orange juice. Bring to a boil over medium high heat.
2. Once it comes to a boil, add the rest of ingredients. Continue to boil for a few minutes before reducing heat to low. Simmer for 15 minutes so that the cider and spices come together nicely.
3. In a mug or tall highball glass, serve the hot cider. Remember to drink responsibly!