Monday, April 11, 2011

Something sweet, but healthy......

Dried Fruit Compote
Ever since I turned almost vegetarian, I have developed a sweet tooth and spend a lot of time thinking of what sweet things I can eat which does not require much work on my part and is healthy.

My go to sweet nibble is dried fruit by itself or in a granola bar. Trader Joes has such a great variety - you can get the usual raisins and cranberries to strawberries, figs, apricots, blueberries, apples and many more. We all have dried fruits with our cereal, in our granola, in cookies, cakes etc. But not many of us think of cooking the dried fruits to make a compote.

Cooking dried fruits plumps them up and you can flavor them with different spices like cinnamon, cardamom, cloves etc. and liquids like orange juice or alcohol like grand marnier, rum etc. I make compotes with various dried fruits depending on what I have in my pantry and especially with a combination of those that I have only a few left in the bag.My favorite combination is Turkish apricots, jumbo raisins, cranberries, blueberries and dark sweet cherries. However any dried fruit combination that you like will work -the idea is to keep a mix of slightly tart and sweet fruits.

This compote is great served over yogurt in a parfait with granola, with hot oatmeal for breakfast, over ice-cream, as a topping for pannacotta (italian dessert with cream), etc. So, go ahead and try it.

Dried Fruit Compote

1 cup mixed dried fruits, chopped into quarter inch pieces
1 1/2 cup water
1 inch piece of cinnamon 
1 clove
1/8 cup honey
1/8 cup agave nectar
1 tbsp soft dark brown sugar
3/4 tsp pure vanilla extract

1.  Heat a small saucepan with water, honey, agave and sugar over medium low heat.

2.  When the sugar has melted, add the dried fruits, cinnamon, clove and vanilla extract and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 20 to 30 minutes till the fruits are plump and the liquid is syrupy.

3.  Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. Pack in an airtight box and refrigerate till you are ready to use. The compote will last for at least three weeks in the refrigerator.

Makes 2 cups

1 comment:

  1. This is a lovely sweet dish to eat with yogurt. What I love is that it has a hint of tartness.