Friday, 2 February 2018

Krasomelo ... honeyed wine

Krasomelo, the festive brew *to warm the cockles of your heart, down to the very marrow of your bones

*to warm the cockles of your heart : to bring happiness and great contentment

Drink for medicinal purposes (colds and flu), at Christmas, on cold winter nights (days and afternoons)

Warm, sweet and spicy wine.  You may know it as
mulled wine
hot toddy

It's mid-winter 'sangria' and goes back to Dimokritus, an ancient Greek philospher of course.  Rumoured to have been invented to cover that vinegary taste once ancient wine started to sour.  Nowadays I would follow the advice of chefs using wine in their cooking.  If you wouldn't drink it then don't use it.


Basic recipe

1 bottle red wine  or white or rose  (1 litre greek  mavrodaphne)
3 tbsps honey (or less)
1 cinnamon stick
5 cloves
peel of one orange
cup of orange juice

Warm it all gently, till the honey has melted and the aroma of the spices has seeped through the wine .  You don't want to boil off the alcohol!   

I add
 a mug of well steeped fruit flavoured herbal tea
a shot of some sort of spirits, whatever I have on hand which is usually raki

You could add

a piece of ginger
sprig of rosemary
handful of raisins
some fresh grated nutmeg

a shot of
Cointreau   or

Strain it into a favourite mug.  Don't bother to decorate with orange slices or a cinnamon stick.  They only get in the way and have to be removed before drinking    

I like this with the mug of fruity tea.  It is like watering down your wine without removing any of the taste.  It also makes more  if you have a crowd and not a lot of wine.  Ha, ha.  Not likely to ever happen around here.
  Another 5 litre container of raki appeared in our house last night as if by magic.  Wine multiplies the same way.  It's a miracle!  Next it will be loaves and fishes.

Rakomelo   -  honeyed raki (pastis, sambouka, arak, zivania)

Raki is also known as tsikoudia or tsipouro depending which area you are in Greece.  It is often drunk here with an ice cube in it, rarely with water like ouzo.  In a small village near ancient Olympia we were asked if we wanted it warmed up, without the honey and clove.

1 tsp spoon of honey for every shot of raki
1 clove
1 tsp cinnamon

Warm the raki gently.  Mix in honey and clove. Strain, drink

This is not an innocent liqueur.  Don't drink too many glasses and stand up suddenly!  You might just plop straight down again


  1. My cockles are warmed and my marrow is merry.

    1. With a nice cup of tea?
      Or you could make a hot 'virgin' as they seem to call non alcoholic drinks with tea spices and fruit juice....to warm those cockles!

    2. Since I can't risk drinking alcohol these days, I imagined the sweet and spicy taste of your drinks and felt that warm and comforting glow almost at once...best of all, no headache this morning! This old body may be pathetic but at least the imagination still works!

    3. I'd send you a smiley face but this old computer doesn't seem to have them!

  2. Again is too late, I don't have honey at home and no wine here, but tomorrow is another day...

    1. I will keep sending these food posts late otherwise you will be eating and drinking too much!

    2. I like them all so much, please send them anytime:)

  3. I had spliced wine in Paris in early December. I was getting a sore throat so I decided to try it
    I not only loved the taste, it did help stop a throat infection. So the old ways are not only good for you, but unlike modern medicine it tastes great as well

    1. Glad it stopped your sore throat. Paris is not to be missed because of a little infection. Spiced wine and Paris, wonderful

  4. With a large Swedish contingent in my family, it's Glögg in this house; usually reserved for around Christmas. Delicious.

    1. Glogg was something I didn't know much of of till googling mulled wine. Every wine drinking country has some version. Skol! (or is it skal?)

  5. Interesting how mulled wine was invented because of sour wine.
    It's called vin brulé here. Main ingredients: red wine, sugar, cinnamin, clove, orange rinds, star anise.
    Greetings Maria x

    1. Star anise pops up in every recipe but I have never seen it here. Vin brule.