Central Texas is full of rich German influence and history. Upon moving here, I discovered so many delicious German foods, Wassail being one of them! It is a deliciously spiced warm mulled punch very similar to cider, can be served alcoholic (best with Brandy) or non-alcoholic. Wassail doesn’t have specific German roots, as it comes from many Anglo-Saxon countries celebrated during Christmastime and New Years, with festivals dedicated to the consumption of this drink and celebration of the holiday time. derived from the Anglo-Saxon words for “to your health” – “waes hael”, the recipe of the same name was offered to visitors throughout the festive period, or in some cases taken around the community in a large wooden bowl decorated with evergreen leaves (usually holly and ivy) and festoons of bright red ribbons. There is no definitive recipe for “wassail” the drink, as it varies from region, and was often dependent on local ingredients and libations such as ale, cider, apple juice and fruit, or whatever was used to “top” the wassail bowl up as it was taken around to individual houses in the local community.
I had a lot of fun looking up recipes of what I thought would be most similar to one I had at a Wassail Festival in New Braunfels, TX last year, and I think I came very close! I hope you enjoy this drink as much as I did. Merry Christmas!
- 4 Cups water
- 1 Cup sugar
- 3-6 sticks cinnamon
- 8 whole allspice
- 12 whole cloves
- 1 clump of crystallized ginger, 1/2 inch chunk fresh ginger, or 1 tsp powdered
- 1 32 oz bottle unsweetened apple juice
- 3 Cups pineapple juice
- 2 Cups unsweetened orange juice
- 1/2 Cup lemon juice
- Bring water and sugar to a low boil
- With cheesecloth, create a sachet of the cinnamon, whole allspice, whole cloves, and ginger and tie with butcher’s twine.
- Add sachet to water and sugar, simmer for 1 hour.
- Remove sachet and add unsweetened apple juice, pineapple juice and orange juice, lemon juice.
- Heat to desired temperature.
- Serve warm or cold, optional* add Brandy to each serving to your desired likeness.