Get Into The Holiday Spirit With Scandinavian Glogg

Dec 22, 2011

In snowy Norway, nothing evokes Christmastime like a pot of glogg brewing on the stove. The traditional Scandinavian winter drink mixes wine, port and brandy with spices like caraway, cardamom and cinnamon to make for a brew that smells divine and tastes even better.

Urd Milbury, cultural attache from the Norwegian Embassy in Washington, D.C., and her husband, Todd, teach NPR's Lynn Neary how to make the holiday treat.

Recipe: Glogg

Glogg is a Scandinavian variant of mulled wine. It consists of hot red wine with spices and a dash of some kind of spirit, such as brandy, rum, vodka or aquavit.

The word comes from Germany via Sweden, and in Norway it's traditionally also called bisp.

The initial preparations for glogg may be made the day before to allow the spices to develop, but it can also be made in one day. No one should hesitate to make this all in one sitting before company arrives.

The day before ...

1. Boil about i cup of water with about 1 cup of sugar and the following spices:

5 to 7 peeled pods of cardamom seeds

4 whole cloves

1 to 2 whole cinnamon sticks

Thinly shaved peel of 1 Seville orange

1 small piece of ginger, peeled and cut in two

Cover and leave to infuse overnight.

2. Pour enough of your chosen spirit to just cover about 1 cup of raisins. Cover with a lid and leave overnight.

Before serving ...

1. Strain the boiled and cooled spice mixture into a large glass bowl. Add 2 bottles of red wine (claret wine recommended). Add the soaked raisins and any remaining spirit.

2. Warm up to boiling point but do not boil. Add more sugar and/or spirit to taste.

3. To serve, pour the hot glogg into cups or glasses along with a few of the raisins and some blanched and halved almonds.

Recipe courtesy of Todd and Urd Milbury.

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