Harkening from a collage of frigid Nordic countries, glogg (spelled glögg in Sweden and Iceland, gløgg in Norway and Denmark, and glögi in Finland and Estonia) has kept spirits warm during winters since time immemorial. Essentially the heated sangria of the Viking kind, glogg is annually celebrated at the upcoming Winter Rendezvous in Poulsbo via a town-wide competition known as Gloggfest. There are many twists to glogg, so experimenting to develop your “secret family recipe” to fit in at the nearest glogg party may be in order. We offer this traditional recipe as a starting place for the aspiring glogg makers among us who want to do it right. This is a great drink for a chilly Northwest winter afternoon after the boat is safely tucked away for the evening.
- 5 750-ml bottles of port wine (go cheap, mixing quality)
- 1 750-ml bottle of bourbon (or other liquor from the whiskey family)
- 1 750-ml bottle of clear aquavit (or other clear liquor like vodka or white rum)
- 3 whole cardamom pods (cracked)
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 6 whole cloves
- 1 strip of orange peel
- 1 8” square of cheesecloth
- 3/4 cup white sugar
- 15 oz. raisins
- 6 oz. blanched slivered almonds
Directions: Heat port wine over medium heat to a near-simmer in a large, lidded pot. Add bourbon and aquavit, and bring back to near-simmer. While the booze concoction heats, place the cardamom pods, cinnamon stick, cloves, and orange peel onto the center of the square of cheesecloth. Gather together the edges of the cheesecloth into a bundle, and tie with twine to secure. Set aside.
When the near-simmering concoction is hot, carefully light it with a long-handle match. Wearing a heatproof cooking mitt, carefully pour the sugar into the flaming concoction. Let the mixture burn for one minute. Put the lid on the stockpot to extinguish the flames, and turn off the heat. Add the cheesecloth bundle of spices, the raisins, and almonds to the warm wine mixture and let steep on low heat for one hour.
Traditionalists will strain out the steeped raisins and almonds to add individually to each guest’s mug as a garnish. A small, coffee-style glass mug with handle is the proper drinking vessel. One can bottle up leftover glogg and store in the fridge for up to a year. Be sure to save the steeped raisins and almonds too in a separate covered container in the fridge, for the glogg isn’t quite the same without the traditional garnish.
We’re thirsty for more recipes, so send yours to firstname.lastname@example.org for a chance to appear in the next issue.