Welcome, Friends! Here we are; just a couple days from Christmas. Today I want to share a quick and easy recipe for Mulled Wine that you can make with items you likely already have in the pantry and the fridge. Because this recipe is so quick and easy, I would like to share with you a few snaps of our Christmas decorations. Let’s make the wine and get to the decor!
Mulled wine is super simple and only requires a few aromatic spices, honey and an orange. You can get a little creative with adding apple slices or, get a little punchy (like I did) by adding some leftover fresh cranberries. You can add brandy or an orange-flavored liqueur, but I didn’t have any on hand. And that’s OK, because this simple Mulled Wine is still a wonderfully warm beverage to sip by the fire (even without the brandy!).
Start with a bottle of dry red wine, like a Malbec. Then we have cinnamon sticks, cloves, star anise, honey and orange slices. Add all of these to a saucepan and bring to a low simmer. We don’t want it to boil, so keep it on a low simmer for 10 minutes. Then turn off the heat and let it steep and cool slightly for about 5 minutes.
Serve in mugs with extra orange slices, a star anise pod and cinnamon sticks for garnish.
Alex and I enjoy board games and puzzles; and this year I thought a holiday Lego set would be a fun project for us to do together. So, we built Santa’s Visit. Since the set is viewable from both sides, the entryway table is the perfect spot for it. Below is the front view, when you walk through our front door, into the foyer.
Below is the back view. With intricate design elements inside the Lego house, the Santa’s Visit Lego set is a festive and playful welcome to our house guests.
Our foyer gives way to our living room, where we have our pre-lit twinkly light Christmas tree. The mantle is decorated with stockings for the whole family: Dante, Penny, Sadie, Alex and myself.
Each season I change out the faux foliage in the tall vase on the mantle. This year I added lit evergreen stems to the faux berry stems for Christmasy mix. The lights create a wonderful ambiance; the height is dramatic which balances the Christmas tree.
I love the minimal look of classic velvet stockings. I had them monogrammed with the names of our fur kids. To add a little visual difference, Alex and I have stockings in contrasting colors. The heavy-weight reindeer stocking hooks do a great job holding stockings loaded with gifts.
Well, I hope you enjoyed my little tour of our holiday decorating. Do make some Mulled Wine, it’s a perfect way to relax and unwind on Christmas Eve; after everything has quieted down, the sky is dark and the lights of the Christmas tree twinkle and glow; maybe put on Ella Fitzgerald’s Christmas Songs album, and enjoy the evening before the festivities of Christmas Day begin. Take care and be well, everyone. xo Kelly
Simple to prepare, this quick Mulled Wine is beautifully flavored and scented with clove, cinnamon and star anise.
- 1 750-ml. Bottle Red Wine
- 1/4 cup Honey
- 1 Orange, sliced into rounds
- 3 Cinnamon Sticks, plus more for garnish
- 6 Whole Cloves
- 4 Star Anise Pods, plus more for garnish
In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, combine the wine, honey, cinnamon sticks, cloves and star anise pods.
Reserve a few orange rounds and slice them in half for garnishing each serving. Add the rest of the orange slices to the saucepan.
Bring to a low simmer and let simmer for 10 minutes.
Turn off the heat and let the Mulled Wine steep and cool slightly, for about 5 minutes.
Serve in mugs with orange slice, a cinnamon stick and a star anise pod.