'If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.' - J.R.R. Tolkien
Hello there my friends, I'm back after a short break. How are you getting along? Have you made it through the festive season and all the excesses of food, wine and celebrations?
I enjoyed reading the words above, quoted from the famous John Ronald Reuel Tolkien, English writer and poet, creator of the much loved The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. It was my birthday on Boxing Day and Peter took me to the cinema to see The Battle of the Five Armies, the third in the trilogy of The Hobbit films by Peter Jackson. Usually we don't eat anything at the movies, but with all the action in this film, we ate our way through a medium sized tub of popcorn.
As I write this post, there's a smoky pea and ham soup, bubbling away gently on my stove. It's the last of our Christmas leftovers and I'm just about ready to revisit much smaller serves of much lighter food.
It's almost time for more celebrations, with the approach of New Year's Eve, which usually means another evening of 'food, cheer and song' for many around the world. I'd prefer not to spend the first day of 2015 with a headache or hangover, so my beverage of choice will be this gorgeous white sangria with blueberry, peach, ginger and mint. I originally spotted the recipe on the Australian Blueberries web site and have tweaked it by removing the alcohol (hush now, that's a good thing!) and lemonade, as well as ditching the added sugar. I've chosen to use white peaches, and in place of fresh ginger, I've chopped in some sweet baby stem ginger in syrup. This is such a lovely beverage... you could almost serve it as a chilled fruity soup.
Anyhoo, cin cin and here's cheers to a wonderful new year!
WHITE SANGRIA WITH BLUEBERRY, PEACH, GINGER & MINT (Non alcoholic)
1 x 750 ml bottle white sparkling grape drink*
2 x 125g punnets blueberries
2 x white peaches, sliced
1 handful mint leaves, washed
1-2 teaspoons Buderim baby stem ginger in syrup, chopped
1-2 cups ice cubes
Combine the grape drink, blueberries, sliced peaches, mint leaves, baby stem ginger and ice cubes in a pitcher. Refrigerate for 1-2 hours, to allow the flavours to develop and the Sangria to chill thoroughly. Add more ice as required. Stir before serving in chilled, wide rimmed drinking glasses.
* I used White Fronti, which is a crisp and refreshing Australian made product. If preferred, you could use your favourite moscato, sauvignon blanc or chardonnay.
Tell me dear readers, are you enjoying the holidays? What food or drink have you had your fill of over the festive season? Will you be celebrating New Year's Eve in a big way?
Hello. I'm Liz, a writer, cook and traveller based in Canberra, Australia.
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NB: I use Australian standard measuring cups and spoons in my recipes.