With mince pies, goes mulled wine. Don't fight it.
1 bottle red wine 60m l (4 tablespoons) dark rum 125m l Earl Grey tea 1 tablespoon dark muscovado sugar 1 orange, quartered, each quarter stuck with 1 clove 1 star anise 2 cinnamon sticks
1 tablespoon honey
Put all the ingredients in a saucepan, bring almost to the boil, but before the aromatic wine actually boils, turn down to the lowest possible heat and keep it warm as you ladle it into any nearby glass.
If you need to make mulled wine that isn't really mulled wine because you have to provide drink that's non-alcoholic (as I had to do for the Christmas fair at my daughter's school last year) then you can substitute a bottle of red grape juice for the wine, half a bottle of rum flavouring (I'm sorry) for the rum.
Today, no rum in the cupboard so I substituted Brandy. And I tell you what if this recipe can make a cheapy red taste this good, just imagine how superb with a good one.
I am an Aussie through and through, and have never had anything but a summer Christmas but can I just say that the aromatics are so heady and my house smells incredibly festive.
Fa la la la laaaah la la la laaah