The problem is, we now have to do something with the wine. We’re not really wine drinkers in general and, ironic as is seems for someone who is getting into making alcohol, I don’t really like alcohol in general. I had a couple of glasses of the wine last night and… well… it’s wine. I can’t even say if it’s particularly good wine. Just that it’s not bad wine. Going through 6L of wine between three of us, though, was probably going to take a while, and I really want those jugs to rack that hard cider.
We have, however, made spiced wine for special occasions in the past, and I did enjoy that. Since I’m also into modern recreations of historical recipes, my mind when to this video I’d found some time ago.
It turned out my daughters were thinking in the same direction, and were quite on board with trying a historical recipe. Of course, we’d want to be having something with the spiced wine, and we started talking charcuterie. So when I headed into town this morning to go to the hardware store, I also popped by the grocery store next door to pick up what we needed.
Now, the recipe for hippocras used in the video above includes ingredients that we just can’t get. I suppose I could order them online if I really wanted to, and try recreating it more exactly in the future, but frankly I can’t justify the cost. So spikenard, galangal, long pepper and grains of paradise are out!
After going through our spice cupboard, I only needed to pick up some marjoram, fresh ginger and cardamom.
Ah, the joys of small town inventories.
It took some searching before I found their last jar of marjoram. I did not expect that to be hard to find! However…
At least not the whole seeds. I did finally find a single jar of ground cardamom, but it cost almost triple what the marjoram cost!
I didn’t buy it.
We did have some ground cardamom at home, but just a tiny bit. Better than none, I guess!
So this is our poor man’s version of hippocras.
black peppercorns (substituting for long pepper)
Plus, to make up for the lack of sweet spices we’re skipping completely, some granulated sugar.
We eyeballed the quantities from the video for what was probably just over the equivalent of 2 bottles of wine. Except the cardamom. I just emptied what was left in the jar, which was probably less than a quarter teaspoon.
The cinnamon sticks were duly cracked, the ginger sliced, the remaining spices ground in a mortar and pestle (I love my mortar and pestle!), then everything mixed together in a pot with the wine.
The mixture is supposed to sit for a day or two before straining, then served warm.
We plan to drink it tonight, so to speed the process, we got it all set up and on the stove on low heat, where it will stay for the day.
It should be interesting to see how it turns out after we strain it this evening!
Of course, that still leaves us with another jug of wine. If this turns out okay, maybe we’ll make it again for Thanksgiving dinner, which we’ll be doing on Sunday.