Cozy Up with a Mug of Mulled Beer
The holidays and cold weather call for warm spirits and cozying by the fire. Mulled wine, irish coffees, spiced ciders are all well and good, but have you ever considered mulling beer? Indeed…why not?
This idea requires an open mind, an adventurous spirit, and the courage to risk 12 oz of perfectly good beer. So rather than endure reader backlash in case this recipe is a total disaster, I put my own beer on the line (actually, it’s the hubster’s subpar scotch ale which has been sitting in the keg since summer).
The recipe came from wikiHow, it’s been edited by almost a dozen contributors and has evolved substantially over the past 3 years. So most of the kinks should have been worked out. It’s also been visited by over 61,000 readers, and the countless comments of those who’ve tried it are very positive. So here we go…
- 12-16 oz decent-quality beer (the contents of your average bottle or can of beer)
- 1 pinch ground ginger, or 1 slice (sometimes called “coins”) of ginger 1/4″ long
- 1/8-1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- ¼-1/2 tsp cinnamon, or 1″ section of a cinnamon stick
- 1 pinch ground cloves or 2-5 whole cloves
- 2 tsp (10 grams) sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon (15 mL) honey
- Put beer in a small saucepan and add spices.
- Heat beer and spices in a small saucepan on low to medium-low heat. If the beer begins to boil, turn down the heat. The beer will begin to foam, but should subside after a minute or two.
- Separate the egg white from the egg yolk and put in a small bowl. This recipe only uses the egg yolk.
- Add two teaspoons of sugar to the egg yolk.
- Beat the sugar and yolk with a whisk or fork until it becomes nearly white (it’s the hardest part!).
- Optional but recommended – Temper the yolk mixture. To prevent “scrambling” the egg yolk mixture by the heat of the beer, you can temper the mixture by adding 1-2 tablespoon(s) of the hot beer to the yolk mixture very slowly and mixing thoroughly as the egg is being added.
- Add the yolk mixture slowly to the warm beer and continue to heat for 5 minutes. Stir gently.
- Add honey to taste.
- Use a strainer (double mesh or cheese cloth) to sieve out the spices and any egg particles that may have formed.
- Pour into steins or mugs and enjoy!
Tips and Variations
- The types and amounts of spices listed above should be treated as a guideline. If you know you like lots of ginger, add more. If you’re more of a cinnamon fan, use more of that. Remember, add only a small amount at first. You can always add more spices, but you can’t remove them once they’ve been added.
- Other ideas for spices may include orange peel, pieces of apple, a drop or two of vanilla or almond extract, different flavors of honey.
- Experiment with different kinds of beer. Lagers, ales, stouts and IPAs will all yield different (and possibly tasty) results.
Surprise, surprise! The results were actually very tasty. Our final drink was creamy and coffee-like in appearance and the aroma reminded me of cinnamon-spiced applesauce. There was no carbonation left, or alcohol for that matter – assuming it turned out as intended. The drink was warm, sweet and spicy with a hint of malt flavor and a mild bitter aftertaste. Something different to try on a cold winter’s day. In fact, whip up a batch in the crock pot for your next holiday bash. It’s a great way to use up that substandard beer that’s been sitting around the house since June, and no doubt it will be the talk of the party. Oh, and do come back and share your comments!
Happy Holidays and Cheers Beers!