I’m not much of a boozehound myself, but if I had anything resembling a “house drink,” it would probably be sangria. Made in advance, big enough to serve a crowd and crowd-pleasing — there are lots of reasons to take a cue to drink as the Spanish do.
Given that Sonja and Alex Overhiser have been churning out appealing recipe after recipe for our Plant Powered newsletter series (you can sign up right here!), I immediately had to try their peach sangria recipe when I saw it flash across my Twitter feed a few weeks ago. Plus, after having had my fair share of overstuffed red sangrias, the idea of a summery white version was hard to resist.
The couple cites chef, humanitarian, cookbook author and everywhere-man José Andrés as their inspiration. Andrés’s tips include macerating the peaches and raspberries in sugar for about an hour. Macerating is one of those culinary terms that gets thrown around with the expectation that everyone knows what it means. If you really want to get into the nitty-gritty, this post from Fine Cooking does a fine job of explaining the process. The TL;DR version? Sprinkling the fruit with sugar draws moisture out of the fruit, softening it. You also end up with a sweet liquid that bathes the fruit. That syrup and the fruit exchange flavors, and a lovely balance is met. So when you incorporate the mix into the sangria, you get fruit that is soft enough to pleasantly eat (please, no hard chunks of apple here) and a drink that is infused with the flavors of the peaches and raspberries.
It’s light, seasonal, pretty and a leading contender for your new signature summer cocktail.
Recipe note: Superfine sugar will dissolve easier in the punch. If you have only granulated, make your own superfine by grinding a few more tablespoons than the recipe calls for in the food processor. Or you can combine the granulated sugar with the brandy (it should almost completely dissolve) before adding it to the pitcher, so that it doesn’t immediately sink to the bottom as you mix all the ingredients together.
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2 ripe peaches, pitted and coarsely chopped, plus more for optional garnish
1 cup raspberries, plus more for optional garnish
3 tablespoons superfine sugar, plus more for sprinkling (see headnote)
One 750-milliliter bottle dry white wine, chilled
1/2 cup brandy (may substitute peach liqueur)
1 handful fresh mint leaves (optional)
1 lemon, sliced into thin rounds
Sparkling water, for serving
Add the peaches and raspberries to a large pitcher, sprinkle lightly with sugar and stir. Let the fruit begin to break down (macerate) on the counter for 1 hour.
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Add the wine, brandy, the 3 tablespoons sugar, mint leaves, if using, and lemon rounds; gently stir to combine.
Fill glasses with ice and evenly divide the sangria. Add a splash of sparkling water. If desired, place fruit on long skewers as a garnish.
Calories: 200; Total Fat: 0 g; Saturated Fat: 0 g; Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 5 mg; Carbohydrates: 14 g; Dietary Fiber: 2 g; Sugars: 12 g; Protein: 0 g.