Spiced Fruit Compote
The quantities given here are more than enough, but the compote keeps so well in the fridge that it's worth making plenty. It can be served warm or cold as dessert, but is equally delicious with yoghurt for breakfast.
200g each of dried apricots, peaches, prunes, and figs, and a handful of dried cherries or cranberries
3 fresh hard pears, peeled, corned and quartered
3 fresh apples, peeled, cored and quartered
1 bottle good, dry red wine or 600ml fresh orange juice
2 cinnamon sticks
3 or 4 star anise
1. Soak the dried fruit overnight in a litre or so of water.
2. Next day, drain the fruit (reserving the water)and place in a saucepan with the fresh fruit. Put the liquid into another saucepan, with the wine or juice, cinnamon, star anise and sugar. Boil, and reduce by half.
3. Pour the reduced liquid over the fruit, bring slowly to the boil, and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat, and allow to cool.
Tom Bissell's wine recommendation : The fruit compote has rich, full flavours, on which a Sauternes or Barsac would be lost. A fortified Muscat wine is the answer, and the Portuguese Moscatel de Setubal is particularly delicious.
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes