I told'ja I'd see you around New Year's, didn't I? Here I am. For starters, how about we have a rapid-fire round of questions before we close this year's posts? Here we go!
Ever had a sip of a drink and wanted to jump into it and live in there forever? Ever wanted to go all the way and make your own drinks for guests rather than just pick up readily available wines, beer and soda? Ever wanted to quench your thirst with something home-made, yet with the right amount of 'hiccity-hic'? Ever wanted to feel like it is summer when it is bone-chillingly cold outside with some cheery looking drink?
Sangrias are the answer! Inviting hues ranging from blood red, fiery oranges, pretty pinks, golden yellows and clear whites - These are down-right amazingly flexible wine based drinks. And talking about color, let me mention to you that I bring to your party this drink only because of the Free-Spirit Bloggers (pun totally unintentional).
This winter, FSB-ite Mridhubhashini decided to throw more than a snow-ball at all of us. The chirpy young lady gave us a theme fit to liven up any occasion. It being New Year's and all, she made this one really vibrant. She randomly assigned colours of the rainbow to numbers and asked us to pick one each. Next she said, go ahead and make food/drinks which would finally look that colour that we picked. We FSB-ites sure love such games. And, it was my turn to paint it orange!
Many on-board FSB have chosen to make a three course meal using the colour they picked, but I decided to make just a drink, not due to shortage of orange coloured foods, but simply due to shortage of time and some other reasons (which I will fill you in shortly).
And so...yes, Sangria! They're basically wine punches supposed to have originated from Spain and Portugal and have found their way into pitchers across the world. Fresh fruit, wine, sweetener, soda and a hint of brandy if you like, is all it takes. Oh and yes, about a day for all these wonderful flavors to get to know each other well in your refrigerator.
Coming to a wee bit of news from my end - We're moving back to India for good from the US sometime early next year. So this might well be the last post from me for a long while now, unless I sneak in some sit-down-and-write time amidst all the packing that's going on. I'll certainly see you all back, but for now, I'll be taking a break. So, until next time, here's sending you and yours good luck, best wishes and good health in the coming New Year and always.
While most recipes call for adding gin or brandy alongside wine, I decided to do away with it. This rendition of Sangria is sweet, light, fruity, refreshing and a perfect way to begin the New Year!
2 Cups White Zinfandel (Or any other blush wine that you prefer)
3 to 4 Oranges, washed and sliced
1 Lime, washed and sliced
1 Lemon, washed and sliced
1/4 Cup Lemon juice, freshly squeezed
12 fl. oz. Mandarin Soda (Or use regular orange flavoured soda like Fanta etc.)
Whole Strawberries in syrup (optional)
Simple Syrup (recipe below)
- To make simple syrup, combine 1/4 Cup of water and 1/4 Cup of Sugar in a saucepan on medium flame and heat, stirring continuously until the sugar dissolves and set aside to cool
- In a large bowl/pitcher toss all the ingredients except the orange soda
- Stir slowly to mix it all up
- Place in refrigerator overnight to macerate
- To serve, pour sangria along with fruit in a tall glass and top up with chilled orange soda
Makes about 2 glasses of Sangria
Again, have a fabulous New Year!