Slow Cooker Sangria
INGREDIENTS: 2 bottles Spanish Rioja (or another dry light-bodied red wine) 1 cup brandy 1 cup cranberry juice 1 cup simple syrup 1 orange sliced 1 cup fresh cranberries 4-5 cinnamon sticks (plus more for garnish) 1 teaspoon whole peppercorns (in a sachet) INSTRUCTIONS: Add the wine, brandy, cranberry juice, simple syrup, orange slices, cranberries, cinnamon sticks, and whole peppercorns to your slow cooker. Stir to combine. Set the temperature to high and cook the sangria for one hour. Then, set the temperature on low to keep it warm for up to 5 hours. Garnish with a cinnamon stick.
INGREDIENTS: 1 (750 ml) bottle of Merlot or another fruity red wine such as Cabernet Sauvignon or Zinfandel 2 cups orange juice 1 cup fresh or frozen whole cranberries, rinsed and picked through 1/3 cup granulated sugar plus more to taste 1 medium orange 2 tablespoons whole cloves 2 (3-inch) cinnamon sticks 1/2 cup brandy Garnishes, if desired: cinnamon sticks, orange slices, and/or fresh cranberries threaded onto a cocktail pick DIRECTIONS: Add wine, orange juice, cranberries, and sugar to a 3-quart or larger slow cooker. Stir to help sugar begin to dissolve. Wash orange thoroughly and stud the orange with the cloves – just stick the cloves directly into the peel, pointy end first. Add the clove-studded orange and the cinnamon sticks to the wine. Cook on low for 2 – 3 hours, or until the berries are tender. Remove the orange and the cinnamon sticks, then carefully pour the mulled wine through a fine-mesh sieve into a large heat-proof bowl. Using the back of the spoon, press on the cranberries to get all of the juices into the bowl. Return wine to slow cooker and stir in the brandy. Taste and add additional sugar until it’s just sweet enough. Ladle into mugs and serve with a cinnamon stick, an orange slice, and/or fresh cranberries, if desired.
Kahlua Hot Cocoa
INGREDIENTS: 4 cups of 1 or 2 percent milk 1 cup of half and half 1 cup of semi sweet mini chocolate chips 3 cinnamon sticks 1 cup Kahlua or other coffee flavored liquor INSTRUCTIONS: Combine all ingredients except for Kahlua in a 2.5 quart slow cooker. Cook on high for 2 hours, giving it a good stir every 30 minutes. After 2 hours turn to warm and add Kahlua. Stir well and serve hot.