Poach Crab Apples In Sweet Wine To Counteract Their Sour Tastes

If you have ever taken a walk in the latter half of the year, you have probably come across a small, red fruit similar to a cherry somewhere in your local landscaping. This fruit is called a crab apple, and while they are related to the apples we buy at the grocery store, they are not quite as delicious when eaten raw. Fresh crab apples have an intensely sour taste that makes eating them unpleasant; however, they can still be enjoyed if you happen to have some on hand. All you need to do is cook them in something sweet. Our recommendation? Poach them in a simple, sweet wine.

Due to this fruit's natural tartness, it is necessary to process them in some way to enhance their apple flavor and turn them into a delicious treat. Many people choose to make ciders, jellies, or jams with crab apples, as these processes involve sugar that will provide a balancing sweetness to the apple's overwhelming acidity. Poaching, however, is a great way to celebrate this seasonal produce while keeping it intact and appreciating its aesthetic appeal. This approach not only concentrates the juices in the apples but also introduces the power of sweet wine. Sweet wines can be quite high in sugar, with some varieties — like ice wines — having as much sugar as a serving of soda, making them a great tool for taming the crab apple's bite and creating a memorable dessert.

How to serve crab apples

Poaching crab apples is fairly straightforward. All you need is your wine of choice, a little bit of sugar, and any desired spices. Then, just cook the apples in the liquid until they are nice and tender as you would any other poached fruit, such as poached pears, which typically takes just shy of an hour.

Once the crab apples are done cooking, it is time to serve them up with a variety of accouterments that will further highlight their newfound sweetness. For a traditional take, plate with a scoop of high-quality vanilla ice cream or a dollop of cream. If you prefer a more unusual approach, a rich cheese always pairs well with fruit, especially ones that have high acidity. Finally, these apples could make an excellent, sophisticated ingredient for topping breakfasts like french toast and pancakes, garnishing dinner party crostini, or muddling into a seasonally flavored cocktail.