Monday, June 6, 2011

Joyce's Homemade (Sweet!) Sangria

Summer for means enjoying sunshine on the deck with a glass of sangria at hand.  I'm not really known for being a bartender (or mixing any type of drink for that matter) but I've been making sangria for years.  As it's also one of Charlotte's favorites, sangria makes its appearance at every Plymouth summer BBQ.  Except for last Labor Day weekend, a month and a half before the wedding, where I had complete wedding brain and forgot to make it.

I'm not a wine drinker most of the time. When I do drink wine, it's usually in the form of champagne or something sweet like a reisling. I stay away from red wines because to me, they represent purple teeth and a heavy, thick flavor that I don't enjoy.  So to transform red wine into a fruity summer drink, I rely on a lot of booze, fruit and sugar. So if you enjoy a traditional red sangria that uses brandy and still tastes like red wine, stop reading here.  But if you're looking for something flavorful and refreshing, I proudly present my sangria recipe!

Sweet and Fruity Sangria

1 bottle of the cheapest red wine (like a merlot) you can find - I like using Trader Joe's three buck chuck
1 bottle of a red Arbor Mist (I know it's not real wine but bear with me) like blackberry merlot or sangria
Fruit of your choice (2-3 cups) - I like to use peaches, nectarines, oranges, limes and strawberries
1/2 cup of white sugar
1/2 cup - 1 cup of white rum (I usually stick with a 1/2 cup)
1/2 peach schnapps (In my world, peach schnapps makes everything taste better)
1 cup of orange juice

Chop your choice of fruit (pictured below is an orange, one lime and most of a pint of strawberries).
Add white sugar and toss the fruit in your container until well coated. 

Add rum (and schnapps if using) and refrigerate for an hour to allow the sugar/alcohol mixture to draw juices from fruit.

Next, muddle the fruits with a long handled spoon to release more juices. Add OJ, and both bottles of wine.  Mix and for best results, refrigerate overnight and serve the next day.

We enjoyed the batch above at the Memorial Day BBQ but I forgot to take pictures of the final result. So for an admittedly stylized version of my sangria, see below:

Photo source here

Doesn't that make you want to grab a glass and find some warm weather?

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