Serious Eats: Recipes

Zero Proof: Mulled Pomegranate 'Wine'

[Photo: Christianne Winthrop]

Mulled wine is a holiday staple often served by the punch-bowlful at cocktail parties. But what do you do now that the ornaments and garlands are packed away? There are still weeks of chilly temperatures and rain in the forecast, and a warm drink would sure hit the spot. This alcohol-free concoction has all the soothing spicy flavor without the fuzzy morning after, making it a perfect drink for weeknight sipping by the fire.

Pomegranate juice works well for this beverage due to its natural acidity, and the color doesn't hurt either. The bold spices pair nicely with the robust pomegranate flavor, where sweeter fruit juices would taste too much like a liquid dessert. The orange juice gently tames the tartness, making this aromatic beverage easy to drink before bed as an alternative to hot tea or warm milk. Just be careful not to doze off and drop the mug—pomegranate juice stains!

The procedure is ludicrously simple: drop all the ingredients in a pot and simmer, then strain into a mug and enjoy. This recipe makes enough for two one-cup servings but could be doubled or tripled and stored in the refrigerator for easy reheating during the week.

About the author: Christianne Winthrop is a freelance food writer, caterer and culinary instructor. She lives, eats and drinks in Los Angeles with her husband, Bob.

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