Picture me making some dessert, shouldn’t be too hard, right?! In fact, I’m making new desserts now every other day, even though the dessert section of my book was the first milestone I achieved. But that’s probably of little surprise to you frequent readers, no? Yet new ideas keep inspiring me, this time around I wanted something to complement a very pure and basic panna cotta. How about a reduced, thick, spiced wine syrup? This had to be good.
A bottle of rosé wine had been hiding behind the olive oil bottles in the corner of our kitchen counter for round about a week now, and neither did I remember who put it there nor where it actually came from. But I knew exactly where it would go. In a small pot I started boiling down the rosé wine with sugar and different spices such as nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves – a fantastic aroma was roaming though our apartment within minutes. With the help of a digital timer I kept checking back every ten minutes, letting it simmer continuously over low heat. The wine was bubbling leisurely without me, that’s why – after half an hour cooking time – I expanded the time frame and added another twenty minutes. Annoying bee-bee-bee-beeeeep-sounds not only kept me on my toes, but also distracted me from my new favorite CD – for a good reason, the syrup ended up having a perfect consistency and an amazing intense color, mainly amber with shades of red and orange. Carefully I poured it in a sealable glass container to let it cool down.
Whoohoo! Checking back the next morning, my flavorful spiced rosé syrup had turned into an incredible firm and sticky mass, much firmer than for example honey or golden syrup. No way you could have drizzled this elegantly over a beautifully arranged plate, it would come down as a big fat lump. Now I’m wondering: What have I done? Is there something such as wine caramel? It tastes great, I’m just not sure what to do with it!