11/15/2011 12:53 pm ET Updated Aug 31, 2012

How to Make Sangria

The basic components of Spanish sangria are lemonade and red wine, says chef Iliana de la Vega of The Culinary Institute of America. You can also add fruit, so she'll be adding pears and apples in addition to sliced lemons (though you can use any fruit that's in season). In a pitcher, she adds ice, then the fruit. Next comes the lemonade, which can also be made with sparkling water if you like carbonation. Simple syrup is added for extra sweetness, then she pours in Merlot. (You can use any red wine variety you like, she says.) After a quick stir, she simply pours the drink into tall glasses.

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Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Chef Iliana de la Vega from the Culinary Institute of America, and I'm going to show you this kitchen basic: how to make a sangria.

A sangria is basically lemonade with red wine. You can put in fruit if you like: we have here some pear, some apples, some lemons. I have the wine, a little bit of simple syrup - and this is a lemonade.

I'm going to grab this pitcher and I'll put some ice in. This is a very refreshing drink, and it's traditional from Spain. I have some pear here; I'm choosing this fruit because it's available right now, but if you have peaches or grapes or any other fruit you like - up to you, whatever you want. You can dice it, you can slice it. I have here a little bit of apple: any color apple, any type of apple will be just beautiful. And I have some lemons, so I'll put some lemons in here too.

Now we have all our fruit here, and I'll add lemonade. This lemonade was made with still water, but if you prefer sparkling that's up to you. So I'm putting about two cups of lemonade into this, and a little bit of simple syrup: up to your taste - perhaps like a quarter of a cup of simple syrup. I'll stir this a little bit so everything will get well combined, well-mixed, here. Now we'll pour some good wine. We're using a merlot here, but if you like any other red wine, it's up to you. This is a very refreshing summer-like drink.