Whilst at the “Great British Menu Revisited” event at the recent York Food Festival I was intrigued by a sauce prepared by Steph Moon that couldn’t be more seasonal if it tried.
It’s also a forager’s delight, as it’s a bit of everything that’s adorning the hedgerows at the moment, and a chef’s delight as it’s quick and easy to make, and doesn’t need a lot of fuss – it can just sit there and be reheated when ready.
I’m being a bit woolly with the measurements as it’s one of those decidedly unscientific dishes – just chuck in what you’ve got and see how it turns out.
Simply grab a handful of each of the following – rosehips, haws, sloes, crabapples, elderberries and rowanberries. Simmer them down with a bit of water for half an hour or so until they’ve developed into a bit of a mush, then pass through a sieve to remove the pips, stalks and leaves. Return to the heat and add in a healthy dollop of sugar – bring to the boil, reduce until there’s a nice sticky consistency and serve.
The crabapples give it a base of apple flavour, with a tart astringency coming in from the sloes, whilst the elderberries turn the whole thing a delightful deep purple. We had it on Sunday with roast pork – a natural choice, given the crabapples, but there’s no reason why it wouldn’t work as well with something gamey, perhaps venison – with a higher sugar content and more of a reduction you’d end up with a stickier sauce which would work well as a glaze for duck or wood pigeon.
In anticipation of serving it up a few more times over the coming months, I’ve bagged up complete portions into a dozen or so sandwich bags and chucked them in the freezer. That way, whenever I feel like pepping up a Sunday lunch, I can simply grab a bag, defrost, and cook away