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October 10, 2013

Hot Cranberry Punch

A no-fuss beverage for your winter gathering

Robin Robertson

  • Y.M. Naama/iStockphoto

Serves 6

2 cinnamon sticks, broken into pieces
1 teaspoon whole cloves
1 teaspoon allspice berries
4 cups (900ml) cranberry juice cocktail
2 cups (450ml) apple juice
1/2 cup (115g) firmly packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 medium-sized orange, sliced
Vodka (optional)

Place the cinnamon, cloves and allspice in the center of a 6-inch (15cm) square piece of cheesecloth. Gather the ends of the cloth together and tie with a string to enclose the spices.

Combine the cranberry juice, apple juice and brown sugar in a 3 1/2- to 4-quart slow cooker, and stir to dissolve the sugar. Stir in the lemon juice, and add the spice bag. Cover and cook on low for 1 to 2 hours.

Just before serving, remove and discard the spice bag, and float the orange slices on the top. Serve hot.

For a spiked version, add a generous splash of vodka to the cooker when ready to serve. 

Tip: The secret to this punch is using a slow cooker like a CrockPot. You won't have to worry about the punch cooling off, or scorching on the stove.

Recipe courtesy of Robin Robertson, author of Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker.

For even more vegetarian recipes, check out VegRecipes.org.