All kinds of grapes are in season right now, and while they make for a healthy snack and inspire you to imitate the old Roman style of consuming them ... it can get tedious. While a tart with fresh fruit is the classic take, here are some other ways you can pep up the seasonal fruit!
In my previous text, I hinted at the idea of using everything but water to cool your drinks. The aim was to avoid watering down your carefully prepared drinks. Well, another very fancy way of doing this is to freeze the titular fruit. Just clean them first, pluck them off their stems, and then after drying them off, throw them into the freezer.
First I’d recommend doing it in a single layer, and once they are completely frozen you can toss them into a container fit for the freezer. This serves two purposes: First they are likely to not stick together, even if they do, it is easier to pull the single layer apart; secondly, they are likely to freeze faster.
To continue with the frozen theme we have a very easy sorbet recipe for you. And considering that you control how much sugar goes in there, it is most definitely more healthy than the commercially available ones.
Like with the ice cubes you’ll first want to remove the grapes from their stem and clean them thoroughly. Get them on a flat tray and freeze them for several hours until they are solid. If you think ahead you can always put them into the freezer the day before and let them freeze overnight. Toss the grapes into a food processor, blender or alike and pulse until it is smooth.
Add the other ingredients and continue blending, making sure that everything is mixed thoroughly. Taste it and if it is not sweet enough you can always add more honey to the mix.
Serve directly or put it into a freezer-safe container. You can keep that sorbet for about a month or two in the freezer. Before serving you might want to give it a few minutes to thaw just a bit.
Now, this is a more Turkish way of preparing your fruit. Let’s say you forgot your grapes in the freezer and the season for cool drinks has long passed. There is another way to utilize it. You can toss them, together with other fruit, even dried ones, into a pot of water with a bit of sugar and cook them together until the color of the water changes.
This might sound overly simplistic but it is a way of making juice without wasting a whole lot of fruit.
Hoşaf is drunk cold, so let it cool off and store it in the fridge. But if you like you can drink it hot as well – I’m the last one to stop you – but keep in mind that that version would be called “kompot” then. Though it sounds a lot like “compote” it is most definitely a warm fruit drink rather than the jam-like compote you may be familiar with.
After so many sweet things, it is time to throw in a slightly savory dish. Although straightforward, salad is a very good way to use the seasonal fruit. While you can of course make fruit salads with grapes as well, we want to explore the not-so-obvious path with our little fruits here.
The ingredients I’ll be listing here are merely a suggestion, you can always remove and add any given element here. Let’s call this an inspiration for your culinary adventures to come!
Wash all the grapes thoroughly and slice them in half. Crumble the feta cheese into a bowl and chop the pepper and green onions finely. Add the olive oil and lemon juice to the bowl and don’t forget the grapes as well. Season to your liking and serve.
If you want to have a different texture, adding crushed walnuts to the mix is definitely recommended. Cilantro or parsley, finely chopped, of course, can be great additions to this as well.
I said weird and unusual and I meant it. Have you ever heard of pickled grapes? Now you have. These go especially well with cheese and the aforementioned salad as well.
Wash the grapes and sterilize your jars by boiling them in hot water for a minute. Fill the grapes into the jars. Put the vinegar, honey and salt into a pot and bring it to a boil. Simmer for one minute and pour the hot mixture into the jars and close them off immediately. Let the jars rest in a cool and dark place for a month before tasting them.
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