Graple Syrup

by autumn on October 5, 2011


I have a little confession to make. I’m an avid farmer’s market shopper—that’s not the confession. By “avid” I mean “deranged enough to leave my apartment at 7:30 am on a Saturday and ride the train for 30 minutes each way so I can get there before all the other kooky New Yorkers.” That said, I’m a little bashful to share that I had never tried local, non-supermarket grapes until this month.

DSCN4789

some city grapes on the vine at the Queens County Farm

After chatting with Kate about concord grapes on the podcast, I couldn’t not get some. And now that I’ve tried them, I am prepared to tell you that the stuff we’ve been paying way too much for at the grocery store is not grapes. Not grapes at all. You know the part in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory when Violet Beauregard tastes a three course meal full of flavors in one piece of gum? You’ll taste that much in a grape like this.

This grape syrup is spiked with maple. Grape + Maple = Graple. I love it in a cocktail (gin or vodka, graple syrup, and seltzer) or just mixed with seltzer or homemade grape soda. I need to make pancakes so I can drown them in this ASAP and obviously it’d be great on ice cream. Freeze it in ice cube trays for mid-winter graple joy.

Graple Syrup

Yield: about one pint

Ingredients

  • 1 lb concord grapes (don't have to be seedless, but mine were)
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 cup water

Cooking Directions

  1. Combine all ingredients over high heat and bring to a boil that cannot be stirred down.
  2. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 5 more minutes.
  3. Let it cool slightly and run it through a food mill.
  4. Strain the resulting liquid through a fine mesh sieve.
  5. Store in the fridge.

Notes:

  • This is adapted from Put ‘Em Up by Sheri Brooks Vinton.
  • If you don’t have a food mill, try just pressing this through a fine mesh sieve.

More awesome homemade syrups:

 

{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kathryn October 5, 2011 at 9:50 pm

Whoa! This looks amazing.

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2 autumn October 5, 2011 at 9:58 pm

Thank you! Isn’t it a lovely color? Gotta give credit to the grapes for that :)

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3 Handcrafted With Altitude October 5, 2011 at 11:53 pm

I’m an avid farmer’s market shopper—that’s not the confession. By “avid” I mean “deranged enough to leave my apartment at 7:30 am on a Saturday and ride the train for 30 minutes each way so I can get there before all the other kooky New Yorkers.”

+nodsnodsnods+

I’m usually at the Farmer’s Market right at 8, but during peach season there were several weeks I was in line at 7:15 am for boxes of Morton’s organic seconds peaches for my jamming.

-the redhead-

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4 autumn October 6, 2011 at 10:15 am

Good produce is definitely something to get out of bed for! Glad you agree :)

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5 Lisa October 6, 2011 at 7:56 am

That stuff look really lovely. I will have to look out for some nice dark grapes like that when they are in season down here.

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6 val October 6, 2011 at 4:02 pm

Concord grapes are so flavorful–they are the ultimate grape. I made jam this weekend and I know when I open the jar I will devour it in like 3 days.

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7 Tara October 6, 2011 at 5:20 pm

Oh, I saw a lonely carton of organic Concord grapes at the grocery store the other day, and passed them by. Should have known better! Your syrup sounds addictive, especially as a cocktail ingredient. :) Love the name, makes it sound urgent.

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8 Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen October 7, 2011 at 1:57 am

What a great idea! I’ve never paired grape and maple together.

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9 Anna October 7, 2011 at 5:07 am

I have tried this with seltzer and it is indeed great! Love the combination name “graple”…Cool!

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10 autumn October 7, 2011 at 10:21 am

Thanks so much, Lisa!
Val, some concord grape jam is definitely on my list to still try and make this weekend.
Tara, I feel a little like I’m scolding someone when I saw “graple.” Definitely urgent.
Thanks, Sylvie. I’ve been trying maple with more and more thing lately (even savory!) and have been really happy with the results more times than not.
Anna, this reminds me of this concoction that my sister used to love as a kid: “a purple cow,” which was milk and welch’s grape juice. Sounds horrifying to me now. Think I’ll stick with this!

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11 Julie from Burnt Carrots October 7, 2011 at 3:12 pm

I totally agree, once you go concord you don’t go back! This looks great! I’m always looking for things to mix with my vodka! Thanks for sharing.

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12 Dawn October 7, 2011 at 5:36 pm

Our household favorite is Grapplesauce. I am super frugal sometimes and I just couldnt bear to part with the skins and pulp after making grape jelly, so I threw them in the pot with some apples. OMG the end result was so wonderful, we now make it every year.

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13 SallyK October 7, 2011 at 6:04 pm

Love, love, love Concord Grapes! I live right in the middle of the Lake Erie wine region AND at the edge of Ohio maple syrup country and never thought of putting the grapes and the syrup together (slaps head, duh!). Can’t wait to try this…. North Coast Muse @ http://sally1029.wordpress.com.

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14 Laura's Last Ditch--Vintage Kitchenwares October 7, 2011 at 8:51 pm

It is true that store grapes aren’t grapes. My husband grows grapes, and they’re amazing.

My friend and I walk regularly. Our walk takes us past a local produce market, and we always peek into the Dumpster. Much of the food in there is still good, but has flaws that shoppers will avoid. In addition to onions and sweet corn, we nabbed a container of grapes. I had very low expectations for store grapes, but when I ate one, it was a real, tasty concord grape, just like hubby grows. I looked at the package they were in, and, sure enough, they were local. There really is a huge, huge difference.

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15 Anna October 10, 2011 at 10:32 am

I am soooooo looking forward to drinking this with some vodka this summer. Will toast ya!

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16 autumn October 10, 2011 at 10:55 am

Julie, “Once you go concord, you never go back.” I love it! Thanks for visiting.
Dawn, I go crazy for frugal tips like this. And I love that it became a tradition for your family.
Sally, Gosh. Sounds like a delicious place to be! :)
Laura, Of course I’m so jealous of folks that grow grapes. There are grapes growing in my friend’s community garden, where I’ve spent some time.
Anna, I tried it with rum last night too and it was great!

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