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Archive for the tag “cranberry”

Wolfgang Chocolate Fruit Candies

I have to be honest.  I’m not usually the biggest fan of cordial-like chocolates.  Bad memories from low-quality chocolate samplers from my youth, perhaps?

Still, I could pass up the chance to try some fruit-centered dark chocolates from Wolfgang, thanks to Angela and her offer of samples.  100% All-natural fruit and fruit juice?  Preservative and trans-fat free?  Ok!

I let them sit on the counter for a few days until one evening, while watching Mad Men, I decided to give one a try.  I selected the blueberry flavor.  WOAH- delicious!  I reached for another:  raspberry.  Incredible!  Alright, better try the final flavor, cranberry, to compare while the others are still fresh on the taste buds.  Amazing!  The fillings are sweet without being cloying, and there are noticeable pieces of real fruit.

Two other cool things about these Wolfgang fruit chocolates:  they’re pretty healthy (especially the blueberry which is just 80 calories for two) and they’re not expensive ($5.89 for baskets of about 5 ounces).

Buy them online or at many Whole Foods, and discover a kind of chocolate you may have never known could be so tasty!

Crofter’s Organic Superfruit Spreads!

Crofter’s Organic has a new line of Superfruit Spreads with yummy “exotic” fruits like Maqui Berry and Yumberry.

I was so excited to try these because conventionally-grown berries have some of the highest pesticide loads. Also, these spreads are made with Fair Trade sugar and contain no artificial flavors or preservatives. It’s wonderful to have Crofter’s Organic as a healthy and delicious option in the jam/jelly/preserve/spread department.

There are four Crofter’s Superfruit Flavors and I tried and enjoyed them all.  I’m going to tell them to you in personal preferential order:

1. South American blend: Exotic blend of Maqui Berry and Passionfruit

2. Asian blend: Bright blend of Yumberry and Raspberry

3. European blend: Old world Pomegranate and Black Currant

4. North American blend: Classic Cranberry and Blueberry

The South American blend really is #1, and I’d be curious to find if there’s anyone who disagrees with me.  The passionfruit/Maqui berry combination is an incredible flavor.  The North American blend was my least favorite; there was something about it that tasted a bit “off” to me (not that it prevented me from finishing the jar!).

I enjoyed these as a toast topping and as a greek yogurt mix-in.

Spiced Peach Cranberry Compote

Spiced jarred peaches and cranberries come together for a delicious warm compote. Perfect for Christmas morning or… even Christmas Eve morning!

Spiced Peach Cranberry Compote

Recipe by Hilary

1 28-oz jar Rosie’s Spiced Peaches
1 bag frozen or fresh cranberries
Dash of cinnamon
Sugar to taste

1. Drain syrup from jarred peaches into heavy medium saucepan.  Add cranberries and stir.  Heat on medium, covered, stirring occasionally, until cranberries pop.

2. Think about how large you want your peaches to be in the compote.  If you’re serving the dish on its own plate, perhaps you want to keep the peaches as halves.  Or, maybe you want them to be smaller, in which case you should cut them now.  Also, discard the couple of cloves from the jarred peaches- they’ll be difficult to remove (and to remember to remove) from the final dish.

3. Add peaches to cranberries and stir.  Sprinkle the dash of cinnamon (being careful not to let it get clumpy) and stir again.  Add a bit of sugar and taste.  Then continue adding sugar until you’re happy with the level of sweetness.

4. Serve warm.

*I was very pleased with Rosie’s Spiced Peaches (Stello Foods) in this recipe.  The peaches are beautiful and the spices add a wintry flavor and aroma to the compote.  You could also use your own canned peaches and spices.  Fresh peaches technically could work, but fresh peach season doesn’t align with hot-fruit-compote season so well. 

Recipe: Cranberry, Quince, and Pearl Onion Compote

Gourmet Thanksgiving in Advance (described here) Recipe #1.

A refreshing, sweet/tart accompaniment to turkey and mashed potatoes. It’s worth it to find quince, which has a pear-like consistency when cooked and a festive winter holiday flavor.

Cranberry, Quince, and Pearl Onion Compote

Adapted from Gourmet Magazine, November 2008

1/2 lb pearl onions (2 cups) – the recipe says “red preferred,” but I could only find white
2 cups organic apple juice
1/2 cup (raw) sugar- the recipe called for 1 cup but I found half to be very sweet
2 T cider vinegar
6 cloves
1 tsp coriander seeds- next time I might crush them or use a powdered form since the crunchy seeds stand out in the finished dish
2 quinces, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 (12-oz) bag fresh or frozen cranberries (not thawed if frozen)

1. Trim root end of each onion and cut an X in it. Blanch in boiling water 1 minute, then drain in a colander. Cool slighly, then peel. Be liberal in what you peel off, since the fibrous outer layers will compete with the texture of the final dish.

2. Bring juice, sugar, vinegar, and spices to a boil in a 3-qt heavy saucepan, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Add onions and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes. Add quinces and continue simmering, uncovered, stirring occasionally until both onions and quinces are tender but not falling apart.

3. Add cranberries and simmer until tender but not falling apart, 5 to 8 minutes. Discard cloves (easier to find than I had feared!). Trasnfer fruit and onions to a bowl using a slotted spoon, then boil syrup, if necessary, until reduced to 1/3 cup. Pour syrup over compote and cool to room temperature. (May be made 3 days ahead and chilled. Bring to room temperature before serving.)

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