Friday, November 11, 2011

Glögg - a Swedish Christmas Tradition

A few days ago(three to be exact) I started a project: to try to make my first glögg ever. Usually I just buy my glögg at the liqeur store. They have great varieties there. Some with raspberry, some with whiskey, vanilla. Every year there's a glögg of the year, a speciall flavor but a few days go I decided to make my own. It's not hard if you take a small shortcut and skip fermentation.

Do you guys know what glögg is by the way? In case you don't; It's a Swedish version of eggnogg I suppose. It isn't anything like an egg nog but it is what we drink around christmas. Originally to keep warm during the cold winters. The word glögg comes from the word "glödga" which originally meant "to heat up". Glögg is, simplified, wine that has been spiced up with Christmas spices, sweetened and then heated up. I heat mine to about 55-58C.

Some glögg can be overpowering if it's been spiced up with too much whiskey or sherry. The recipe that I found, however, had a perfect balance of spices and sweetness and eventhough it is quite potent the taste isn't overpowered with hard liqeur. I found the recipe on a Swedish blog called Kastrullresan and I find that place very inspiring. You can visit it here:

If you want to try a typical Swedish Christmas tradition, here is the recipe. Translated and everything. =)

You'r going to need:
15 cl of vodka or other pure, hard liqeur
10 gram Cinnamon
1 ½ gram Clove(about 20?)
1 piece of dried Ginger
2 gram crushed Cardamom
½ Seville orange peel

1 litre Red whine(any, cheap kind will do)
2 deciliter Sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla sugar

Step one:
Crush the cardamon
Break up the cinnamon into smaller pieces
Put the cinnamon, clove, ginger, cardamom and seville in a glass jar.
Pour the liqeur on top and close the lid/cover.
Leave this for about 3 days, less if you want a less Christmassy taste.

Step two:
After 3 days strain the liquid and put it in a pot. Add the wine, sugar and vanilla sugar and head slowly on low head. Don't let it boil or the alcohol will evaporate. Stirr once in a while until the sugars have dissolved completely. Done!

The taste will improve even more if you leave this until the year after, in sealed bottles. But I suspect my glögg wont survive that long, sadly.

Reheat the glögg before serving.  In Sweden we serve it in small glasses and add raisins and blanched almonds. Enjoy!

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