While researching cardamom for my post about cardamom roasted vegetables, I learned that cardamom is one of the spices that typically flavors the Scandinavian winter-time drink known as Glögg.
According to Wikipedia, Glögg is the name of mulled (heated and spiced) wine in Sweden and Iceland; it goes by other similar names in Norway, Denmark, Finland and Estonia, and it is called Gluhwein in German-speaking parts of Europe.
Historically speaking, mulled wines like Glögg have been enjoyed for centuries, particularly by folks living in cold regions of the world. Today, Swedes and other Scandinavian dwellers enjoy Glögg at festive occasions in the weeks leading up to Christmas, and it’s often served with pastries.
Now, I am not much of a drinker, but…
1. I had an almost full bottle of red wine left in the refrigerator from Thanksgiving
2. the idea of mulled wine definitely appeals to me
3. I felt like celebrating a little because my recipe for turkey pho is one of the finalists in a contest at Food52 (make sure you vote for me :)
4. how can you not want to try something with a name like glögg?
…so I came up with this version.
This Cranberry Glögg, which I adapted from this recipe, contains more juice than wine, and you are welcome to swap the proportions. You can use more wine and less juice, or no juice at all. I have some lovely apple brandy from a local winery, so I added a little as glögg recipes do sometimes contain brandy; I’ve also seen ones that contain vodka, rum or aquavit.
Note that if you don’t want a very alcoholic drink, you can boil the mixture so that some (or most/all) of the alcohol cooks off. Most recipes tell you to keep the temperature very low so this doesn’t happen, but it is up to you. If you do want it to be alcoholic but you find that you’ve heated it too much, you can always add a splash of brandy or one of the other forms of alcohol before serving.
On the flip side, if you want a completely alcohol-free version, you can make a glogg-like drink just with juice. I think it would be nice with a mixture of cranberry juice and pear or apple cider, for example. Pomegranate juice might also be great. If you are using only juice and no alcohol, you really won’t need the additional sweetener (unless you’re using unsweetened cranberry juice, which is incredibly tart on its own).
In order to really taste the spices, it’s important to let all the flavors infuse for a while. Though I didn’t use one, a crockpot might be a good way to go with this recipe; you can leave it on low for quite a while (a day or so) before serving and I think it would just get better and better.
Recipe For Cranberry Glögg
*4 cups unsweetened organic cranberry juice
*2 cups red wine
*1/2 cup brandy
*1/2 cup organic brown sugar or raw sugar or honey
*10 cardamom seeds/pods
*2 cinnamon sticks
*one 1 inch piece of ginger, smashed with the side of a knive
*1/2 cup dried cranberries or raisins
1/2 orange peel (dried or fresh)-optional
7-10 dried figs, cut in half- optional
1/2 cup blanched almonds-optional
Mix all ingredients in a large pot and warm over very low heat for about an hour. Turn heat off and allow to sit at room temperature, covered, for several hours or overnight. Reheat over low heat before serving. Serve each cup with some of the dried fruit and the optional almonds.
This glogg recipe is my contribution to Holiday Food Fest; this week’s theme is “Holiday Cocktails, Mocktails and Appetizers”, and it’s hosted by Amy of Simply Sugar and Gluten Free! Make sure to check out Amy’s site for links to all the other great Holiday Food Fest posts!
I love slow cooked pulled pork, and it’s quite simple to make in a crockpot. Many pulled pork recipes call for bottled barbecue sauce, though, and it’s tough to find a brand that doesn’t contain high fructose corn syrup (which we should all stay away from).
This recipe features a much less sweet, yet tangy and delicious, homemade sauce based on apple cider. If you don’t have hard cider on hand, use an additional 12 oz. of regular sweet cider instead. Get the recipe started in the morning and it will be ready in all its glory by the evening, though it’s even better reheated on the next and subsequent days.
For the healthiest pulled pork, use organic, pastured pork in this recipe.
Apple Cider Pulled Pork
*1 1/2 cups sweet apple cider plus 1 1/2 cups hard apple cider (or just use 3 cups of sweet cider
*1 cup organic or low sugar ketchup (look for one without high fructose corn syrup)
*1/2 cup brown sugar
*1 Tb. cumin
*1 Tb. paprika
*1 Tb. garlic powder
*3 Tb. hot sauce
*4 onions, peeled and sliced
*4 pounds pork shoulder, preferably organic (you will want to remove the layer of fat on the pork; I find it easiest to do this once it has cooked and before you shred it, but you can do it before you cook it, if you like)
1. In a large bowl, mix together both ciders, ketchup, brown sugar, cumin, paprika, garlic power and hot sauce.
2. Place half of the onions in the bottom of a 4 1/2- to 6-quart crockpot/slow cooker.
3. Put the pork shoulder on top of the onions and pour the sauce over the pork. Top with the rest of the onions.
4. Cover slow cooker with lid and cook pork mixture on high for 4 hours (or on low for 8 hours), or until pork is very tender.
5. With tongs, carefully transfer pork to large bowl. Turn crockpot to high, cover, and heat sauce to boiling to thicken and reduce slightly (alternatively, this can be done in a pan on the stove).
6. While sauce boils, use 2 forks to pull pork into shreds. Return shredded pork to crockpot with the sauce and allow to cook for an additional 30 minutes on the high setting.
7. Serve pulled pork with or without whole grain sandwich buns; I love it with braised greens, cole slaw and/or cranberry chutney!
Thanksgiving has now come and gone. At my home, we enjoyed a great dinner; I hope that you did, too.
I made these Roasted Vegetables with Cardamom as part of our Thanksgiving feast. They were a last minute addition to the table, but turned out to be one of my favorite parts of the meal.
I adapted this dish from the recipe for Roasted Turnips with Maple and Cardamom in the October/November 2009 issue of Fine Cooking Magazine. I was intrigued the moment I saw the recipe because I hadn’t ever used cardamom like this before.
Cardamom is not inexpensive; I held out on purchasing it for quite a while because at more than $13 for a small jar, I figured I could surely get by without it! But once it joined my spice collection, I quickly succumbed to cardamom’s charms and won’t be able to go without it again. Since cardamom has a very strong flavor and most recipes (including this one) call for small amounts, I’m hoping my jar will last quite a while…
As far as cooking with cardamom goes, it is used frequently in dishes of Indian origin. It is also traditionally used in Scandinavian countries, as both an addition to breads and pastries and as one of the ingredients in the mulled wine known as Glogg. Cardamom is also favored in the Middle East; in fact, much of the cardamom harvested in the world is exported to Arab nations and used there to flavor coffee.
Medicinally, cardamom is used much like cinnamon, to aid digestion.
Though this dish it is perfectly holiday-appropriate, there is nothing about this recipe that screams Thanksgiving…I’m definitely making this again, and soon.
Roasted Vegetables with Cardamom
adapted from the recipe for Roasted Turnips with Maple and Cardamom in the October/November 2009 issue of Fine Cooking Magazine
*3 1/2 pounds (about 10 cups, diced) mixed winter squash/root vegetables (I used a combination of butternut squash, carrots, turnips and parsnips), peeled and diced
*3 tablespoons olive oil
*2 tablespoons unsalted butter, preferably organic
*3 tablespoons maple syrup
generous pinch of red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper
*5 cardamom seeds/pods (the original recipe calls for 1/8 tsp. ground cardamom and 1/4 tsp. ground coriander)
*1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
*2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
1. Position racks in the top and bottom thirds of the oven and heat the oven to 425°F (note that the original recipe called for a 475°F oven; this seemed really hot to me, and I was afraid I'd burn the veggies, but you are welcome to try the recipe at this temperature). Line two large, heavy-duty rimmed baking sheets with foil.
2. In a mixing bowl, combine the vegetables, oil, and 1 1/2 tsp. salt. Toss to coat well. Divide the vegetables between the two pans and spread evenly in one layer. Roast for 20 minutes. With a large spatula, flip the vegetables. Swap the pans’ positions and roast until tender and nicely browned on a few sides, 15 to 20 minutes. (The vegetables on the lower rack may be done sooner than those on the upper rack; watch that they do not burn).
3. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Whisk in the maple syrup, vanilla, and the red pepper flakes. Add the cardamom seeds and allow to infuse over very low heat for 1-2 minutes (if using ground cardamom and/or coriander, whisk in after the red pepper flakes). Remove the pan from the heat.
4. Transfer the vegetables to a large mixing bowl. Gently reheat the sauce, if necessary, and stir in the lemon juice. With a heatproof spatula, toss the sauce with the roasted vegetables. Add half of the cilantro and salt to taste and toss again. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with the remaining cilantro.
More information about and recipes using cardamom:
The Herb Companion’s Article on Cardamom
Xacuti, a Goan chicken dish, from Healthy Green Kitchen
Kalyn’s Spicy Red Lentil and Chickpea Stew
Tartelette’s Cardamom and Saffron Ice Cream
This entry for Roasted Vegetables with Cardamom is my contribution to Weekend Herb Blogging, hosted this week by Marillyn from Just Making Noise. WHB is managed by Haalo!