A Christmas Toast from Denmark - "Skol" fra Danmark

Serves 40

Heat wine slowly in a large vessel. Put orange peel, cardamom seeds, cloves and cinnamon in a cheesecloth bag and place with the wine in the kettle. Boil slowly for 20 minutes, the add the almonds and raisins and boil slowly for another 20 minutes. Remove from flame and remove bag with spices and fruit peel.

Place a fine wire mesh over the kettle and put the lump sugar on it. Gradually pour the cognac over the sugar. Light a match and hold it near the sugar, letting it ignite the cognac. When all the sugar has melted and run over the mesh and through it, remove the mesh. Put the flame out by covering the kettle with a lid.

Serve hot in mugs with a few raisins and almonds in each mug.