Over the next couple of days, I’ll be posting a Fig Crostata, reminiscent of the crostatas I fell in love with in Italy, and a Cider-Spiced Sweet Potato Soup. Both of these recipes use an Apple Cider Syrup I make every autumn when ciders begin to appear in the markets. As an introduction to these next two postings, I thought I’d share the syrup recipe separately since it can be used a number of ways:
* Mixed with a little maple syrup (or not) and poured over your morning pancakes;
* Brush as a glaze on pie crusts fresh from the oven;
* A drizzle for apple pie fresh from the oven or over vanilla ice cream;
* An ingredient for a soup, pie, or sauces.
It’s so easy to make and I frequently just need a couple or more tablespoons, so I usually just make one cup of syrup at a time and keep it in the refrigerator. I used cinnamon and cardamom as my spices, but feel free to have some fun with this syrup. Infusing the syrup with ginger or allspice would be wonderful options too!
As a note, if you follow the directions, and apply standard canning practices, this would make a wonderful small gift for family and friends now that the holidays, amazingly, are on the horizon.
Apple Cider Syrup
Makes 1 1/4 cups syrup
- 3 cups apple cider
- 1 1/2 cinnamon sticks
- 5 cardamom pods, smashed
- 1/2 cup agave nectar
Combine the apple cider, cinnamon sticks and cardamom pods in a wide-mouthed pot and bring the cider to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce to a simmer and continue to simmer until the cider is reduced to 1 cup of liquid, about 30 minutes.
Strain out the cinnamon and cardamom, and return the liquid to the pot. Add the agave nectar and return the liquid to a boil over high heat. Bring the liquid to 218 degrees F, using a candy thermometer to confirm the temperature.
Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly before pouring into a jar.