In my travels I loved coming across new and interesting foods. As a child, one such food was blackcurrants. My aunt had some bushes growing in her yard in Normandy. I would sneak off and have a few but it was no secret as I came back with purple fingers and a purple tongue. They stained.
As I got older, I realized that blackcurrants, or cassis as they are called in France, were not very common here in North America. I was thrilled when I came across them at a local berry farm. This tart, little berry is packed with antioxidants, as most purple foods are. They are also very high in vitamin C.
Unfrtunately, they are also a very delicate fruit. Their stems are a bit woody and their fruit, soft. Before they went bad I wanted to make sure to preserve them so I decided to make a compote. With my compote I could mix it with yogurt or in desserts. Like many other fruits (apples, apricots, etc) it also makes a nice side for pork dishes. Maybe try it instead of cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving. Another use is to accompany the compote with some nice cheese and bread. Regardless, I wasn’t about to let my precious cassis go to waste.
Making a compote is a simple process. I put my 2 cups of blackcurrents in a pot with about 1/4 of water and let it boil down to a sauce texture. You have the option to puree the berries depending on the texture you like. Personally, I like somewhere between a chunky and a smooth compote so whatever my mixing spoon will allow me to do is how my compote stays.
When adding the sugar, keep in mind what you will be using it for. Like I mentioned, blackcurrents are quite tart. I added 4 Tbsps of cane sugar which cut a bit of the tartness but didn’t make it too sweet that I couldn’t use it with savoury dishes also. Both the sugar and water can be adjusted to taste.
Once you have tasted the compote and it is to your liking, simply place a funnel in a jar to help pour. Gently help the compote through the funnel and let it cool in the jar fully before sealing. You can keep it refrigerated or freeze it for later use.
2 C blackcurrents (washed)
1/4 C water
4 Tbsp cane sugar
1. Combine water and black currents over medium heat.
2. Cook until they break down. (approx. 10 minutes)
3. Stir occassionally and smash the fruit as you go.
4. Stir in sugar.
5. Reduce a few more minutes.
6. Pour into a heat-safe jar and let cool.
Protein 3.06 g