Compote (French for "mixture") is a dessert originating from 17th century France made of whole or pieces of fruit in sugar syrup. Whole fruits are immersed in water and with sugar and spices added to the dish, over gentle heat. The syrup may be seasoned with vanilla, lemon or orange peel, cinnamon sticks or powder, cloves, ground almonds, grated coconut, candied fruit, or raisins. The compote is then served either warm or chilled arranged in a large fruit bowl or single-serve bowl for individual presentation. The dessert may be topped with whipped cream, cinnamon, or vanilla sugar. Other preparations consist of using dried fruits which have been soaked in water in which alcohol can be added, for example kirsch, rum, or Frontignan. Dried fruit compote is a common passover food.
In France a compote can also be a fine puree of cooked fruit made usually with a base of apple, with the possible addition of apricot, pear or various other fruits. Compote such as this may also be used as a base for other desserts, such as French apple tart. This may be purchased from a supermarket in small single-serving containers or in larger glass jars. It has a similar consistency to baby food and may be eaten served cold as a breakfast product, dessert or simply as a snack.
Western European compote is not directly related to the 300 years older Eastern European punch-like fruit drink kompot, even if they seem similar in name and ingredients. The Eastern European drink originates from the time of the Ottoman Empire, it may be even the predecessor of the Western European dessert of the same name.
- Apple sauce — in many Hassidic communities, applesauce, or sometimes more specifically chunky apple sauce is called compote.
- Compote (game dish)
- Fruit salad
- Kompot — the punch-like fruit drink common since 1300 in Eastern Europe (especially Bosnia, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, Serbia, Slovenia and Ukraine)
- Tong Sui — the sweet dessert soup common in Asia (China, Hong Kong, Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore and Taiwan)
- ^ Robuchon, Joël, "Members of the Gastronomic Committee". Larousse Gastronomique. New York: Clarkson Potter/Publishers, 2001, p. 322-323.
- ^ Food and Drink in Medieval Poland. Rediscovering a Cuisine of the Past. Page 153 - Recipe for pear and fig kompot originating from Byzantine Empire, Constantinople, 960A.D-1453A.D., the predecessor of the Ottoman Empire
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