Technically, I am calling this a recipe, but I know there isn’t much involved in the recipe. It simply is a matter of combining two (or maybe three) ingredients to produce a final product. However, I think that macerated fruit could be considered a recipe in that the final product is fairly different from the one with which you started.
Macerating fruit can be done in two different ways. It really depends on what you want the final result to be. If you simply are seeking a little more sweetness and liquid for your fruit, then you have one option. If you want to add other elements of flavor and some liquid, then you have a different option.
Option one is the addition of sugar, something people have done to fruit for ages. They just didn’t call it macerating. It merely was sprinkling sugar on fruit. However, if you let the fruit and sugar rest together for a while, you will not only have sweeter fruit, you also will have softer fruit with juice.
Option two is the addition of flavor via a liquid. You can use liqueur, vinegar, wine, or a similar liquid. Pour the liquid over the fruit, and allow the flavors to incorporate. Obviously, the addition of liquid will provide juice, but the longer the fruit can sit, the more incorporated the flavors of the liquid and the fruit will become.
Macerating fruit only takes about 5 minutes of active time. Yes, the fruit does need several hours to sit, but the actual work is minimal. The flavor results are amazing. Before you make your next fruit-topped shortcake or filling for wedding cake, give one of these recipes a try.
- 2 cups fruit, diced (berries and pit fruits work well)
- 2 Tb. sugar
- 2 cups fruit, diced
- 1/2 cup liquid (wine, liqueur, or vinegar*)
- 1 Tb. sugar*
- In a small bowl, sprinkle sugar over fruit.
- Stir to combine.
- Cover and refrigerate for two or more hours.
- Place fruit in a small bowl, and pour liquid over it. Cover and refrigerate.
- Stir every hour so that flavors are well combined.
- Chill for at least two hours.
- *If using vinegar or a dry wine, the addition of sugar will prevent the fruit from being too tart. If using a liqueur or a sweet vinegar or wine, no sugar is needed.