With the arrival of our new Antioxidant Tea which is filled with immune boosting ingredients we asked our Herbalist Jennifer Derham to share her favourite Winter drink recipe.
The Smoking Bishop – a medicinal hot wine recipe is perfect for cold Winter nights. A hearty, aromatic, elevating and invigorating mulled wine which will bring a rosy glow to the cheeks on a cold night.
Mulling wine is an ancient ritual dating back to before Roman times, as spices were used to preserve wine and mask its bitterness. Up until the 18th century wine was often safer to drink than water, which ran a high risk of contamination with bacteria such as cholera. Medicinal wines infused with herbs, spices and resins have been used throughout history as tonics and medicines as wine was a particularly useful way of preserving and administering herbal medicines, especially those that did not taste that great.
Smoking Bishop is a type of warm mulled wine or port drink, often referred to simply as ‘Bishop’. It was especially popular at Christmas in the 19th Century and Victorian times. Smoking Bishop was traditionally made from port, red wine, Seville oranges or lemons, sugar and spices. The citrus fruit was roasted to caramelise it and the ingredients then warmed together. The name Bishop comes from the shape of the traditional bowl, shaped like a bishop’s mitre, and it was served in this form in medieval guildhalls and universities.
Our herbalist Jennifer Derham has adapted a traditional recipe published by Eliza Acton in her Modern Cookery in 1845. Brew and use as a ‘medicinal’ drink during the winter.
Bishop made with slowly roasted Seville oranges has a wonderful flavour making a pleasant change to that of lemons and the Content Antioxidant Tea adds an extra sweet and fruity flavour. Smoking bishop is best made over a couple of days to allow the wine and port to be infused by the spices and citrus fruits.
- 6 Seville oranges (if not available use 5 large sweet oranges and one lemon)
- 1 bottle (750ml) red wine
- 1 bottle ruby port
- 36 – 40 cloves
- ¾ cup of Rapadura sugar / Coconut Palm sugar / or honey to taste
- 3 Cinnamon sticks
- Vanilla pod, halved.
- 1 tablespoon Content Antioxidant Tea (hibiscus, bilberry, rose hips & rose petals)
- 1/2 tsp ground ginger or thumb size piece of fresh ginger root sliced.
- 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- Nutmeg powder
- Cinnamon sticks (Optional)
- Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/ gas mark 6.
- Cut the oranges in half and stud with the cloves. Place the oranges in the oven on a lined baking tray and bake until golden brown, 1 – 2 hours. Take out of the oven and leave aside.
- Meanwhile pour the wine into a large bowl adding the Content Antioxidant Tea, sugar, vanilla pod and spices (leave out the cinnamon sticks). Add the oranges and allow it to stand in a warm place, covered, for 24 hours.
- The next day remove the oranges and squeeze the juice back into the spiced wine.
- Pour the mixture through a sieve into a saucepan and add the cinnamon sticks. Gently simmer for 5 minutes, then add the port.
- Heat slowly on a low heat for about 30 minutes. Before serving, get the bishop smoking (but not boiling) by turning the heat up for a couple of minutes.
- Serve the bishop with a cinnamon stick and a grating of nutmeg in each glass.