The holidays are here, and that means pulling out a few special recipes for the occasion. Today’s Christmas Punch is lovely all year round, but we can’t deny it just has that joyful spirit that pairs so well with the season’s dinner parties.
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The winter season is all about getting together with your loved ones, and the best way to quench everyone’s thirst is with an entire pitcher of vivid, fizzy punch. Whether you’re hosting a dinner party or have been invited to someone’s home for Christmas, this cocktail will show off those mixologist skills you’ve been working on.
Sweet but not cloying, tangy but not mouth-puckering, vinous but not overly serious. Today’s cocktail is Christmas in a glass. Simple Sips is all about tasty, uncomplicated cocktails you can make at home, so our Christmas Punch recipe calls for only four ingredients plus garnishes. Let’s take a look at what you’ll need.
Few Ingredients, Lots of Flavor!
We’re starting with three cups of high-quality cranberry juice. Those sweet and tart flavors are super Christmas-y! The very Christmas spirit in liquid form. If available, source pure cranberry juice; remember, you get what you pay for. You can also make your own with a blender or fruit processor — simply blend and strain a bunch of fresh cranberries, and you’ll get the tastiest juice ever.
Did you know cranberry juice is super healthy? It’s packed with antioxidants — minuscule particles that bind with scavenging free radical molecules floating in our bloodstream. These compounds can cause serious trouble, so you might want to keep them in check. What better way than with cranberries?
Now, back to our recipe. Along with the red-hued cranberry juice we’re adding ginger ale, which will add bubbles, sweetness and the most enticing aromas to our punch. I’m sure you can smell the sweet ginger already!
I think ginger ale is underappreciated when it comes to cocktails; it’s such a noble ingredient; we should really use it more often!
The Right Sparkling Wine For Punch
Now, for the boozy ingredients, you’ll need an entire bottle of sparkling wine. Here you want to choose wisely. There are basically two types of sparkling wine: the ones inspired by the creamy French Champagne and the Italian style.
The first has a complex nose reminiscent of baker’s yeast and apples, and the latter is much fruitier. To make this type of wine winemakers ferment white wine twice, once in a tank and a second on in the very same bottle you purchase. It comes without saying this is a labor-intensive and time-consuming process, meaning the Champagne-style sparkling wine is more expensive.
Today we’re using the fruit-forward Italian style. This one is fermented in a stainless steel tank, and it keeps all its fruity flavors. This is a great value, by the way, you can find a fantastic bottle for a few bucks. Get yourself a bottle of Prosecco if you can; the wine’s peachy personality and it’s mouthwatering acidic backbone will really elevate our punch to new levels of excitement.
You can also use sparkling grape juice for a non-alcoholic version.
Talking of alcohol, we’re spiking things up with a splash of brandy. Any vanilla-scented and spicy brandy will do here, and the best part is that you don’t have to spend a lot to get a bottle of fine grape spirit.
How to Garnish a Christmas Punch?
Combining everything in a pitcher, the only thing left to do is adding a fistful of zesty orange slices and whole fresh cranberries. Fresh garnishes are always best. I like to freeze leftover cranberries whole, then use them as a garnish. They add a beautiful look and help keep the drink cold without watering it down.
Make sure you refrigerate your Christmas punch for a few hours before your guests arrive; you want it ice cold to make the most of the cocktails refreshing nature.
This cocktail is a fantastic welcome drink. Serve it in wine glasses to create a formal atmosphere or use any glassware you have in hand. Either way, your Christmas Punch will put everyone in a celebration mood; it’s a statement — that it’s time to “Deck the halls”!
- 3 cups cranberry juice
- 1 bottle sparkling wine
- 1 cup ginger ale
- 1 cup brandy
- Orange slices
- Frozen cranberries
- In a tall pitcher mix together cranberry juice, ginger ale and brandy.
- Top with sparkling wine and stir gently.
- Add orange slices and frozen cranberries.
- Chill for at least 1 hour or until ready to serve.
Try a non-alcoholic version of this delicious Christmas Punch.
In a pitcher mix
- 3 cups cranberry juice
- 1 bottle sparkling white grape juice
- 2 cups ginger ale
Garnish with orange slices and frozen cranberries
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