This Winter Fruit Salad is a delicate and delicious recipe to surprise your guests on Thanksgiving. It is easy to prepare in the morning, making sure to allow enough time for cooking. In I Love My Slow Cooker, Beverly LeBlanc suggests to use firm dried, rather than the plumped ‘ready-to-eat’ varieties. If you only have the softer fruit in your cupboard, she recommends to reduce the cooking time in the second step to 1 hour before you add the smaller fruit.
450g/1lb dried fruit, such as apples, apricots,
mangoes or prunes
250ml/9fl oz/1 cup orange juice, plus extra if needed
8 green cardamom pods, lightly crushed
6 Earl Grey tea bags
1 cinnamon stick
thinly pared rind of 1 lemon, pith removed
thinly pared rind of 1 orange, pith removed
55g/2oz/scant ⅓ cup soft light brown sugar, plus extra
2 tbsp dried cranberries
2 tbsp currants
2 tbsp sultanas
2 tbsp hazelnuts (optional)
lemon juice, to taste (optional)
Greek yogurt, to serve
- Put the dried fruit, orange juice, cardamom pods, tea bags, cinnamon stick and lemon and orange rinds in the slow cooker. Do not turn the cooker on.
- Pour over 750ml/26fl oz/3 cups boiling water, then cover with the lid and leave to steep for 30 minutes.
- Switch the cooker to HIGH. Remove and discard the tea bags. Add the brown sugar and stir until it dissolves.
- Re-cover the cooker and cook for 1½ hours. Stir in the cranberries, currants and sultanas, re-cover and cook for a further 1 hour until all the fruit is soft and the flavours are blended.
- Meanwhile, toast the hazelnuts, if using. Heat a frying pan over a medium heat, add the hazelnuts and dry-fry for 3–4 minutes until lightly browned, shaking the pan occasionally to ensure they do not burn.
- Leave to cool slightly, then rub off the skins, chop and leave to one side.
- When the fruit salad is cooked, taste and add lemon juice, if you like, or a little more orange juice or brown sugar, depending on how tart the fruit is.
- Sprinkle with the toasted hazelnuts, if using, and serve hot with dollops of yogurt.
- If not serving immediately, leave the salad to cool completely, then cover and chill until required.
- Leftovers can be kept refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
I Love My Slow Cooker
Available from Nourish Books