Sunday, 3 June 2012

Fruit Compote in Ginger Honey Syrup

Breakfast is usually a rushed affair for me and means something quick with my morning coffee.  It's not quite grab-and-go as I hate eating on the run.  However it does mean no cooking and it has to be strong enough to kick start the day alongside the coffee (and believe me when I say I need a good kick-start to get going especially when I'm as fast as molasses on a Monday morning).  Since making my own yogurt, its been a regular breakfast staple.  To save on washing, I confess to eating it straight out of the bottle.  Oops.

Look at those juicy fruits stewing in the thick ginger syrup
To jazz  up the yogurt a little, I decided to make some fruit compote and add it to the yogurt as a topping.  This was actually inspired by breakfast at Galaxy Hotel, Macau.  They had tiny pots of plain yogurt alongside equally tiny pots of fruit compote - apple, pear, rhubarb and apricot.  Really prettily served in little glass jars so you can see the fruit and syrup.  

Most compotes are simply cooked fruit in a syrup.  I decided to use the same dried fruit topping I use for my usual yogurt - dried apricots, cranberries, raisins and prunes.    You can use your favourite combination.  And to make the flavours a little more intense, I used a ginger honey syrup, spiced up with cinnamon, star anise and cloves.  A really heady aromatic mixture.  Mmmmm.... it smelled great as it was cooking up.  Plus ginger is reputed to be a good stomach-settler due to its 'warming' properties.  Cook up a batch to last you over the weekday breakfasts, serving it over yogurt or oatmeal.  Or serve it as a dessert over vanilla ice-cream (ooh, decadent) or on its own.    Deelish.

served over thick Greek-style yogurt

Recipe for Fruit Compote in Ginger Honey Syrup
1 cup mixed dried fruits - use any of your favourites
1 cup water
3 tablespoons ginger honey concentrate
1 cinnamon stick
1 star anise
3 cloves

1.  Place all the ingredients into a pot and bring to a boil over medium heat.  Make sure the fruits are immersed in the water.
2.  Reduce heat and gently simmer until fruits are plump and syrup is of the desired consistency.  I wanted a really thick syrup to spoon over yogurt, so I cooked my syrup down to about 1/4 cup.
3.  Cool before storing in a non-reactive container.  Store compote in the fridge for up to 1 week.

Note for ginger honey syrup:
If you can't find ginger honey concentrate, make your own.  Take a knob of fresh ginger (about thumb size), clean it and smash it with the back of your knife.  To the cup of water, add 3 tablespoons of honey and the smashed ginger.  If you want a more intense ginger flavour, pound the ginger and squeeze out the ginger juice before adding it to the water. 

Here's the link to homemade yogurt.

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