Α dive into juicy desserts of drunk fruits that smell of caramel and butter. Kumquat and caramelised apples in wine flavoured with vanilla and cinnamon. In true harmony with the season, we do our best to give a note of warmth in our dinner table and this recipe is our perfect ally. Thus, when served warm they fill the air with their fragrant juice, they enclose the red wine’s steam and they add a tiny, almost imperceptible, caramel bitterness in the taste, as any fragrance worthy of its reputation would do.
A dessert held captive by its ingredients. It is only when they are all combined that they give this perfect taste. United winter flavours, the red drunk fruits party or the caramelised winter fruits. There are so many names one could give to this recipe, but only one way to understand the hidden poetry that lies inside it: To make his own prepared and in full knowledge that he may be charmed in the process.The recipe was made by luscious apples and the best kumquats – handpicked from my friend’s short but loaded tree- but kumquat is easy to find in the market at this time of the year. We have also added some Goji Berries, a super food your body will truly appreciate. All these dove in the rich red wine that willingly lent its whole body and colour.
Use aromatic apples or compose your own mixture with the ones you prefer. It won’t spoil the recipe, as it has already been tried with lots, including the green apples you see in the photo, with their characteristic scent producing a very interesting outcome. You can also experiment with the warm dessert by enhancing (or replacing) the Goji Berries with a few dried prunes or apricots. And if you really want to take your dessert to the next level, just add a scoop of ice cream at the last moment – you don’t want it to melt -. It can’t get better than that!
caramelized apples in wine with kumquat
Preparation: 15 minutes and 15 minutes more for the cooking plus 2 hours for marinade. You can prepare the caramelised apples in the wine well in advance or even the night before and reheat them gently in low temperature after bringing them in room temperature. Quick and easy recipe.
Ingredients (serves 4)
4 big apples washed, cored and cut in 8 pieces
110 g soft light brown sugar
2,5 tbsps butter (50g)
10 kumquats washed and cut in 2 or 3 slices (depends on their size)
3 tbsps dried Goji Berries
250 ml red wine with good body
½ tsp vanilla essence
1 cinnamon stick
vanilla ice cream or any of your preference (optional)
To prepare the caramelised apples: In a large, preferably deep frying pan (that fits all the apples in one layer) and in medium (to high) heat melt the sugar for 2-3 minutes until it starts to caramelise, taking a nice deep colour. Put the butter and stir well in order to be fully homogenised. Add all the apples in a single layer and with a spatula turn them until coated with enough of the mixture. Cook till they have softened and caramelised without losing their shape (approximately 3 minutes). Lower the heat to medium at the 2nd minute if you notice the caramel becoming too dark. Remove from heat and keep it on the side.
To prepare the aromatic wine:In a pan and medium heat pour the wine. Boil for 3-4 minutes, then add the kumquat, vanilla and the Goji Berries. Boil for additional 1- 1,5 minute and pour the mixture to the apples, placing them back to the fire (medium to low). Stir for 1-2 minutes, until the caramel has dissolved in the wine. Remove from heat and transfer the mixture into a bowl. Cover with cling and leave it to marinate for 3-4 hours, so the flavours of the fruits and the wine have fused.
To serve: Heat in a low fire, stirring gently aiming for all the ingredients to have the same temperature. Serve in warm bowls. Caramelised apples match nicely with some ice cream (vanilla, caramel or cinnamon), which should be added in the last minute.