Glogg is a Swedish beverage which is made by heating, spicing and sweetening wine. It is a popular drink for cold winter evenings of Nordic countries. It is similar to the German equivalent named Gluhwein. It is a popular hot drink during Christmas or the month before it. It has similarity in taste to Wassail or mulled cider.
Glogg falls under the category of ‘mulled wines’, which are warm drinks containing sweetened wines and spices, and which are consumed by different names and recipe variations is different European countries. They have a warming effect on the body, helping it withstand the winter chills.
Glogg is prepared with red wine, spices like ginger, cardamom, orange peel, cloves, etc. and sugar. It is a sweet drink that is consumed less frequently than regular alcoholic drinks.
The spice used in glogg recipe act as preservatives, and it keeps well for about an year. It is hence bottled after preparation and kept for future use as well.
Grocery stores in Norway and Sweden stock pre-mixed spices for the purpose of preparing glogg.
Glogg – Ingredients and Preparation Overview
For glogg one needs to red wine, sugar, water and spices. Spices used include cinnamon, dried orange peel, dried ginger, cardamom and cloves. The spices are heated with the water to boiling point, and then the heat is turned off and it is left to stand overnight. Now sugar and wine are added to the water and the same is heated, though not above 72 degrees Celsius as the alcohol would evaporate. The resulting liquid is a delicious beverage which is now ready to consume.
Glogg is served hot, usually in tiny cups, which are accompanied with tiny spoons. Raisins and blanched almonds are dropped into the cups at the time of serving. The tiny spoons are used to pick these raisins and almonds at the time of consumption.
The beverage is consumed socially as a pre-dinner drink or during cocktail at about 4 or 5 p.m. It may be accompanied by side dishes like pepparkakor.
In Scandinavia, ‘glogg parties are held in the month before Christmas. In Sweden, ginger bread and lussebullar (a bun containing raisins and saffrons, which is sweet in taste) is served with the drink at the traditional Christmas buffet. In Norway, rice pudding is served along with it. The beverage is drunk before the rice pudding is eaten. The rice pudding is served with cold cordial.
Variants of Glogg
The glogg recipe may have several variations. Often sweet wine or white wine is used instead of red wine. Spirits such as brandy and vodka may also be suggested by the glogg recipe. It can be freed from alcohol by boiling it for some time to evaporate the alcohol.
The beverage may also be available commercially in a non-alcoholic version, where fruit juice (such as blackcurrant juice) is suggested instead of wine by the Glogg recipe.