You may not realize this about me since I write books in English and all, but once upon a time some years ago, I got my Bachelor of Art degree in Spanish.
Sî… hablo Español.
The fall of my junior year in college I was in Spain studying for a semester, and even after I graduated, I spent four months there with Campus Crusade for Christ. There are so many things I love about the Spanish culture…from long siestas (naps) in the afternoon, to the way they center so much of life around people and relationships…I was just in heaven there. They are my people.
I’ll never forget one time planning to meet a friend for drinks and tapas in the afternoon and she told me she was so sorry, but she wouldn’t be able to stay long because she had a busy afternoon of studies and whatnot. My American brain figured that we had maybe 30 minutes or an hour tops to visit. Three hours into our afternoon together she profusely apologized for cutting it short and we wrapped up. I think it was that moment that solidified this culture of people lovers in my heart forever.
Since returning from Spain the first time nearly 20 years ago, my heart still holds a special place for the people and the cuisine. So much of the culture there centers around grabbing small snacks (tapas) and drinks with friends and colleagues. It’s just how they roll. Somewhere along the way our friends introduced us to Sangrîa as well.
If you’re not familiar with it, Sangrîa is a refreshing drink made with red wine and citrus, and there are loads of places in the US that are making it WRONG in my opinion! Forget the stuff with white wine and berries…that’s a spritzer…the real deal is bold and refreshing!
We had some friends over for dinner last week and I decided that it’d be fun to serve this tasty treat alongside our meal. I’ll warn you, dilute it with the lemon-lime soda for sure, and also be sure to drink this in moderation…it can be stout and so you need to drink it responsibly.
The fun thing about it is because so much of the flavor comes from letting the citrus sit in the wine, it tastes good even for a couple of days. Just add the soda each time you want to have a little to maintain the little bit of underlying fizz.
The cookbook I bought was a translation of a traditional Spanish cookbook, so all of the measurements were in metric units. I’ve converted it for you below and made it simpler to use just 1 bottle of wine at a time. The original recipe would require opening a second bottle and using just part of it, so I have recorded the recipe to make it as simple as possible. This would give 4 people each a nice sized glass.
Real Spanish Sangrîa
- 1 bottle wine (750 mL)
- ¾ c brandy
- a little less than 1/3 c sugar
- 1 ½ c lemon lime soda
- orange, lemon, lime sliced
Mix wine, brandy, sugar and sliced citrus in a pitcher and chill for an hour or so. Before serving add lemon lime soda and serve over ice.
I also created a 5×7 recipe card of the recipe to print off here: Sangria Recipe Card
Espero qué le gusta! (That means, “I hope you like it!”)