That satisfying pop when you bite into an ice-cold grape or that gentle sip of red you take after a long working week, there’s something pretty special about these little round fruit that beautifully dots our country’s vineyards. But besides it’s aesthetics and ability to be turned into a beloved alcoholic beverage, we want to explore the wonderful ways in which we can cook with it. So, get your grapes and we’ll meet in the kitchen!
By Jana Du Plessis
1. ROAST THEM
You might think we’re crazy, but hold the judgement until you’ve tasted it. Trust us when we say you would never want to have your grapes any other way! It’s so simple – place them in a roasting pan with a drizzle of olive oil and a dash of salt and watch the magic happen. They’ll turn soft and wrinkly with the most addictive jammy consistency. Serve alongside roast chicken for a sweet-salty hit, or top your peanut butter toast with a few of these roasted jewels. Pure bliss, guaranteed!
2. CHOP THEM
They are already so tiny, do you really need to still cut them?’ you may ask. Yes, you do. Then toss them with a finely chopped red onion, olive oil, red wine vinegar and seasoning for a refreshing salsa you’ll be requesting on repeat.
3. FREEZE THEM
This one is for the warmer summer days. For a decadent, yet healthy treat, eat them frozen and relish in the cool burst of flavour in your mouth. Or, better yet, add them to the punch bowl or wine to keep drinks cool without watering them down. We won’t say no if you toss a handful through some softened ice-cream either … just saying.
4. COOK THEM
We usually use berries for a sweet, syrupy compote, but grapes add another dimension to this sweet creation. Stew some of the fruit with a little sugar and water until it becomes sticky and oh so delicious. We’d say top a vanilla sponge with compote and some whipped cream, but really, you can use it on anything from cheesecakes to sandwiched between biscuits, French toast or flapjacks. Anything your heart desires!