stewed fruit

i've been eating stewed fruit every morning! yes, i still have teeth! stewed fruit is basically just cooked down fruit. while on the macro-cruise we were served grain, veggies and miso soup for breakfast each morning and there was always a side of cooked fruit! there is a very comforting and mellow sweetness about cooked fruit and it is so nice to eat warm things vs. cold in the morning - it's more gentle on an empty tummy.

cooked fruit is soooo easy to make, so flexible and keeps for a while in the fridge. make a big portion of it on a sunday and keep it in the fridge for the whole week to serve on: hot or cold cereal, on the side of some nice cooked barley, or even with some more savory dinner things like sauerkraut and grain sausages! my favorite combo of cooked fruit is dried prunes and fresh apples.

crockpot note: i cook my fruit in my tiny crock pot and it's so easy - you don't need a crock pot but i highly recommend getting a petite one if you don't have one already. then you can just throw your ingredients in, turn the crock pot to low and go to sleep and in the morning you'll have warm fruit! shop small and inexpensive crock pots here.

what you'll need: - fresh fruit like 1 to 2 apples, pears, oranges etc (i like to use organic apples) - dried fruit around 1 cup of prunes, apricots, 1/2 cup of raisins (make sure they are naturally dried without added sugar and sulfur dioxide - my favorite are the organic dried prunes from whole foods) - a pinch of salt - barley malt or brown rice syrup (optional for added sweetness) - flax seed oil (optional if you want to include more healthy oils in your diet)

do it: - cut and core your fresh fruit into cubes or slices - your preference. if you're using apples or pears, leave the skin on (it's healthy) if you're using oranges, peel them, separate them into slices and try to not include too much of the white part - put all your fresh fruit in a sauce pan or crock-pot - add your dried fruit in the sauce pan or crock-pot - the ratio of cooked to dry is up to you, usually the more dried fruit the sweeter it is - add enough water to cover most of the fruit so it won't scorch, but don't drown it, you're not making a soup... - remember, if you're cooking in a crock pot the water will steam off so more water is better to make sure it doesn't turn into a sticky mess - add 1 tablespoon of your oil, a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of barley malt - turn burner to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, for as long as it takes to get the fruit soft and mushy (usually 20 mins to an hour), it should be like a jam consistency. the longer you cook it the more the flavors will develop. in a crock pot just cook for 6 to 8 hours on low - towards the end of the cook-time, season with some cinnamon or nutmeg if you want a little spice - eat and store in the fridge to heat on low for later! or eat it cold like an apple sauce or on toast!

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