Monday, April 26, 2010

Secret-Ingredient-Sangria with Sliced Fruit

Adapted from my Spanish friend Anna
Serves  6-8 


2 small oranges, washed and thinly sliced into circles, ends discarded
2 limes, washed and thinly sliced into circles, ends discarded
1 granny smith apple, washed, cored, and sliced into thin wedges
2 plums, washed, pitted, and sliced into thin wedges
1 bunch red grapes, washed and thinly sliced into circles, about 5-6 per grape
2 (cheap but yummy) bottles of medium-bodied, dry red wine, cold *
1/4 cup brandy
1 1/2 L orange Fanta soda, cold
1/4 cup + 2 Tbl granulated sugar
pinch ground cinnamon


Wash and slice all of the fruit.  Place a small handful of sliced fruit (containing a little bit of each type) into each of six or eight glasses (or jelly jars, which I like to use).  Place the rest of the fruit into the pitcher. 

In a large mixing bowl, combine the wine, brandy, Fanta, sugar and cinnamon.  Whisk to completely dissolve the sugar.  Pour the wine mixture into the fruit-filled pitcher.  Refrigerate for about an hour or two, along with the fruit-filled cups.  (If you’re pressed for time (or just really excited to drink some sangria) you don’t really have to wait – It will be delicious right away.)

When ready to serve, add a few ice cubes to the glasses, then fill each glass with sangria from the pitcher.  Keep the pitcher nearby for refills.

* Traditionally, Sangria is made with Rioja, a Spanish wine.  But Rioja can get pricy.  With extra fixins’ like sugar and Fanta, it should be clear to you that we’re not after anything complex and fancy.  Any cheap but yummy wine will do.  Box wine even, is perfect for this situation.  There’s nothing wrong with box wine!   Yes, it certainly lacks complexity, but that doesn’t necessarily make it bad. Box wine can actually be pretty tasty, and that’s all we’re after here.
Aim for a medium-bodied mixture of wine.  Any combination of Pinot Noir, Merlot or Cabernet Sauvignon would do.  (I mixed a bottle of Merlot with a bottle of Cab.)  I only advise against using two bottles of Cab, which may be a little too full in body for a light-hearted beverage like this. 




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