Christmas is the time to bring out one’s best when it comes to alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks that will bring cheer to both adults and children. Every country has its own special drink associated with Christmas. If it is Wassail, Eggnog, Hot Toddy, Punch or Mulled Wine in England, it is Glogg in Denmark and Hot Chocolate in Mexico. In Brazil, Christmas occurs during peak summer and cooling drinks like the sweet Brahma Maltz Beer, Caipirinha and a variety of cold fruit punches are served along with the food.

Caipirinha’s alcohol content comes from cachaca. British have whisky, French have cognac, Japanese have sake, Russians have vodka, Germans have kirsch, and Brazilians have cachaca. Cachaca is produced from distillation of sugar cane. Sugar cane was introduced in Brazil by the Portuguese in the 1500s in order to produce white sugar. In the production process, after the canes were crushed, the left over called bagaca in Portuguese (from which word cachaca took its name) was used to feed the cattle; the natural fermentation of the bagaca produced a very basic type of cachaca, which was happily drunk by the slaves. The Portuguese noticed the alcoholic properties of the drink, refined its production methods and came up with the new drink cachaca which is such a favorite of Brazilians.

Caipirinha:

Caipirinha

4 Limes quartered

1/2 Cup of Brown sugar

4 peg measures of cachaça   (Good quality Vodka or Rum can be used instead.)

Ice cubes (crushed)

A large jug

Method:

Combine cut limes and sugar in the jug and mash with a wooden spoon (it is very important to use a wooden spoon in this recipe) until the limejuice and the sugar start to dissolve. Pour Cachaca, Rum or Vodka to taste. Mix well and add crushed ice.

Mulled Wine:

Mulled Wine

1 Bottle of Red Wine
1 Lime, quartered
8 Cloves
2 sticks of Cinnamon
A small pinch of Ginger Powder
2 tablespoons brandy
200ml Orange Juice
Sugar to taste

Method:
Place all the Ingredients in a saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer for a couple of minutes. Remove from the heat and let it cool slightly before serving.
Remove the Lime, cloves and Cinnamon sticks. Taste the Mulled wine and sweeten according to taste. Serve in red wine glasses. This drink must be served warm, but not too hot or the wine glasses will crack!

Glogg:

Glogg

3 cups of Water
1 Cinnamon stick
5 Cloves
½ teaspoon Allspice powder
5 Cardamom Pods
A pinch of dry Ginger
Grated Orange Peel (1 fresh Orange)
Grated Lemon Peel (1 fresh Lemon)
100 grams Raisins
1 Bottle of Red Wine
Almond slivers
Method:
Mix the Water, Cinnamon, Cloves, Allspice, Cardamom and Ginger for 1 hour. Add grated Orange peel, grated Lemon peel, and Raisins. Let mixture sit overnight. Pour the bottle of red wine into the mixture, and slowly let it come to a simmer. Put a few slivered almonds into the bottom of each serving glass or mug, and pour the Glogg on top. This drink is also served warm.

Eggnog:

Eggnog

4 eggs

3 cups milk
8 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg grated or ground.

Method:

In a large bowl, beat the eggs using a beater. Add milk & sugar.
Continue beating until mixture thickens slightly. Add in the vanilla essence & ground nutmeg. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.

This is a non-alcoholic recipe. 1 cup whiskey is added to the alcoholic version but this must be added at the last stage along with the vanilla and nutmeg.

Fruit Punch:

Fruit Punch

2 cups Vodka (optional)

5 cups mixed juice: Pineapple, lime, orange and apple mixed in the proportion you like

2 cups water

3 tablespoons sugar

Method:

Combine ingredients in a large and festive punch bowl. Serve with fruity Ice Cubes. Do not add the vodka if children are being served.

Fruity Ice Cubes:

Mixed fruit, (tinned or fresh):  You can choose Oranges, Pineapple slices, Strawberries and Cherries.

Fruit juice of any flavour.

Method:

Slice the fruit into small pieces. Place fruit at the bottom of individual ice cube trays. Pour the juice over the pieces of fruit. Freeze until solid. Drop in individual glasses, fruits or punch bowls.

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31 responses »

  1. Mary Bloody says:

    Hurrah, that’s what I was exploring for, what a information! present here at this webpage, thanks admin of this website.

  2. gopali ghosh says:

    Hi Beniyaz

    Just discovered your blog and it is delightful. Just to add to your recipe on Mulled wine; I tend to add while simmering, thick rings of clementine oranges instead of orange juice and keep the fruit while serving. The rest is the same apart from the fact that I put a cube or two of sugar in each individual glass, add a spoonful of brandy and then pour the mulled wine on top- just a tad more potent!

  3. beyniaz says:

    Hi Varun, the punch would make about 10 servings. Depends on how many glasses people drink! So halve the quantity, leave out the vodka mentioned in the recipe and serve in smaller glasses, that will do the trick!

    • Varun Reddy says:

      Thanks, but I won’t have it without the Vodka, esp. in the Delhi cold 😉 Halving would be good enough…

  4. Varun Reddy says:

    Whoa… I think I must make the Fruit Punch and the Eggnog once I am back in Delhi… No alcohol at home 😉 But yes, just a small doubt: The quantities you mentioned for the punch – are meant for serving how many people? “cause i need to make for just 2-3 ppl at max…

  5. Indrani Talukdar says:

    I gained real erudition reading about Christmas beverages. You have highlighted the history very well, thamks Beyniaz.

  6. Shernaz says:

    Great info Beyniaz! Wish I had read this earlier, would have made our Christmas celebrations headier with the mulled wine. Must try it out for New Year. Thanks for the lovely treats you provide.

    • beyniaz says:

      Thanks for reading this Shernaz. Hope you had a good Xmas celebration.

      • Shernaz says:

        Hi, Beyniaz. The mulled wine was great. All of us enjoyed it on new year’s eve and some one even wants the recipe. Another party coming up in the family later this month – it’s going to be the fruit punch. I’ve made tea punch earlier and it’s been a hit. This one should be too. Thanks once again.

  7. Geetashree Chatterjee says:

    Wish you a very Happy Christmas, Beyniaz. Exotic recipes but I am not much of an alcoholic drinker. However, the Fruit Punch seems exciting.

  8. vimala madon says:

    You missed out sangria Beyniaz. It’s the national drink of Spain called ‘sangria’ and easy to prepare. Gives a kick without kicking you senseless. Teetotalers can leave out the hard stufffand still have fun!

    • beyniaz says:

      Vimala, Sangria is one of my personal favorites (but so is a peach margarita and apricot liqueur made from scratch!).
      Thought I would write on Spain and include the sangria recipe in that blog. I like wassail too…so many recipes and could not include all of them or this blog would become a book!

  9. knot2share says:

    Oh WOW! This is a treat honestly, like what everybody has said. We expect 28 degrees cel on Christmas day and you have given me some good options to try out with my friends at the party.

    Cheers to everyone!

  10. Madam,
    I have done different combinations of the fruit punch myself, when I was a bachelor, and I have enjoyed every bit of it. But after I got married, I am wary, lest I become a bartender! 🙂

    Jokes apart, your blog is the best this Christmas Season, and what’s Christmas without the festive “spirit”?

  11. Dear Beyni,

    Loved all the recipes. It’s a different thing that I haven’t attempted them as yet.

    But this really was a Christmas treat for Write Space!

    • beyniaz says:

      Dear Shail: Get the bartender to tender the drinks in your house!
      But all the recipes mentioned here are very easy.

  12. deepika says:

    Variety from all over the world. I was expecting this treat from you.

  13. nadi says:

    Beyniaz!
    how am i going to work now?
    fantasising about mulled wine at 11 AM!

  14. Sonal Shree says:

    Are you a lawyer? Seriously?
    Love the supply of information.
    Have tried eggnog, its in the refrigerator now. Let’s see how it turns up (considering the person involved is me and not you)!

  15. Sneha says:

    Gosh, your a wealth of information. Let me know when you are coming to Mumbai, seriously. I’ll make some lunch for you and you can make a delicious glass of Fruit Punch for me in return 🙂

    • beyniaz says:

      Thanks for writing in Sneha. My visit to Mumbai is long pending and grossly overdue. Was there last in Jan. and only drove through Thane last month, on the way to Gujarat.

  16. vimala ramu says:

    Very informative,Beyniaz. But I am a hopeless teetotaller and a veggie as I had mentioned earlier.

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