How To Make Fruit Compote
Fruit Compote can be expensive in store but it is quick, easy and inexpensive to make at home and makes a delicious topping for breakfast as a topping on pancakes, waffles or to make a delicious addition to yogurt, ice cream or custard as a dessert.
This rich, delicious and healthful fruit mix is served straight from the fridge once it is made so it is ready when you are! Using a combination of berries is especially beneficial with immediate health benefits and long term protective benefits against Dementia and Parkinson's disease. See why, below.
A Basic Blueprint for Making Fruit Compote
Autumn fruits, especially berries are delicious in compotes and you can vary this basic recipe in numerous ways to create your favorite flavor combinations.
Slideshow of The Fruit Compote Making ProcessClick thumbnail to view full-size
Apples in Fruit Compote
Start out with the basics, peel, core and dice two large cooking apples. Here in the UK, I prefer to use Bramleys but you can use any slightly tart flavored apples and use three or more smaller apples if you only have these.
Adding Liquid to Your Compote Recipe
For the liquid, I like to use 150 ml of pressed apple juice - (that's a little over half a cup). However, you can vary this depending on the fruits you decide to add - see below.
Use frozen fruits for a delicious treat out of season. Berries freeze really well and are especially good if you want to use them in compotes. You do not even have to thaw them out first! Just increase the cooking time until they have softened to the right consistency.
Choosing Your Fruit Compote Combinations
For the fruits, choose about 450 grams (that's around two cups) of mixed berries, blueberries, stoned cherries or peeled and chopped peaches, nectarines or apricots. The thing is not to be afraid of trying different combinations.
Making A Muslin Spice BagClick thumbnail to view full-size
Now spice it up a little!
Adding spices is entirely optional and depends on your personal preference but here is the easy way to do it!
Cut a piece of muslin about six inches square and use this to make a little bag to hold your chosen spice (see below). No sewing required!
Just place the spice in the center, pick up all four corners of the muslin square.
Give the top a twist to enclose the contents.
Tie firmly with a short length of kitchen string. This ensures that you can remove the spices and keep the delicious, smooth texture of the compote.
Spices you can use include:
Serve Your Homemade Compote In Style!
These pretty compote dishes show off the rich color of homemade fruit compote beautifully and look great when presented at dessert with ice cream, fromage frais, yogurt or homemade custard with your berry compote stirred in, or poured over.
Try this Speedy Idea For Making Compote with Frozen Fruit
How to Make The Compote
Place the apples and the juice in a small pan with your spice bag (if used). Simmer gently for about ten minutes, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon until the apple becomes soft and pulpy.
Now add your chosen berries or fruits to the pan and simmer gently for around five minutes. At this point, test for sweetness. You may not need to add any sugar but if you do, add this to taste and stir gently until completely dissolved.
- Raw cane sugar is particularly nice with berry combinations
- White sugar is nicer with peaches and apricots.
- You could also add Stevia or other sugar substitutes for a lower calorie option.
Your compote is now ready and all you need to do is allow it to cool, remove your spice bag (if used), then transfer the compote to a suitable container with a lid for storing in the fridge and chill it until you are ready to use it.
Fruit compote will keep two or three days quite safely if kept covered in the refrigerator.
Which two fruits came out top in the US as the best sources of anthocyanins? Blueberries and Strawberries!
Strawberries and Blueberries May Also Cut Heart Attack Risk For Women
Why are Berries so Good for Us?
At the start of this article, I mentioned that homemade fruit compote with berries has many immediate and long term protective health benefits and here is why.
Probably the original 'superfoods', berries are packed with antioxidants, vitamins and healthy fiber. Numerous studies have linked the flavonoids called anthocyanins they contain with a reduced risk of dementia and other neuro-degenerative disorders.
You can read the results of a fascinating study conducted with more than 130,000 participants at the Universities of Harvard and East Anglia, here: http://www.uea.ac.uk/mac/comm/media/press/2012/April/flavonoids-parkinson%27s-disease
I think this quote (taken from the article referenced above), sums it up nicely:
“This is the first study in humans to look at the associations between the range of flavonoids in the diet and the risk of developing Parkinson’s disease and our findings suggest that a sub-class of flavonoids called anthocyanins may have neuroprotective effects.”
The study showed that participants in the study who consumed at least one portion of berry fruits per week were about 25% less likely to develop the neurodegenerative condition, Parkinson's disease.
Professor Xiang Gao from the Harvard School of Public Health who led the study in association with Prof Aedin Cassidy from the Department of Nutrition, at the UK's University of East Anglia's Norwich Medical School, said it was a good idea to make eating these berry fruits a regular part of our diets. This is because of the protective effect against dementia, Parkinson's and other health benefits such as reducing the risk of high blood pressure (please see my HubPages article for other ways to lower your blood pressure naturally).
Enjoy The Health Benefits of Fruit Compote!
It seems like learning how to make your own fruit compote is a win-win situation. Not only is this a delicious way to get all the family enjoying the immediate and long-term health benefits of delicious berries and fruits, it will also save you money on the store-bought variety which may, in any case, have other, less desirable things such as preservatives, colorings and flavorings added!
© 2013 Alison Graham