Grape dessert bowl rote grutze

Rote Grutze is a beautiful grape dessert that reminds us of vintage and traditional events like the Barossa Vintage Festival. We are confessed dessert lovers and a bowl of these rich, flavourful little jewels is part of our German heritage.

It’s usually found only in Barossa homes during vintage using red grape varieties rich in colour like Mataro and Shiraz. You can use any grapes at hand or a blend of table grapes as we sometimes do later in the season. This food tradition was carried to Barossa settlements with its European settlers. Traditionally red berries were used in the dish, but the Barossa gave the dish it’s own regional stamp by using grapes. Think of this dish like a mulled wine jelly. Delicious!

Prep time 2 hours Cook time 15 mins

Ingredients
  • 1kg bunches of late-picked shiraz grapes, washed
  • 3 slices lemon, skin included
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 4 tablespoons Sago or Tapioca pearls*
Method

1. Pull the berries from the grape bunches, place in a saucepan with the lemon slices, cinnamon and cloves. Boil for ten minutes, then allow to sit for 45 minutes for skins to infuse colour; the juice should be a rich dark colour, like red wine. Strain through a sieve, squeezing as much juice as possible. At this point you can freeze the juice, ready for future batches of Rote Grutze.

2. Return the juice to the saucepan with the sugar then sprinkle the sago/tapioca pearls over the top. Allow to soak for several hours in juice to save cooking time.

3. Bring to a gentle boil, stirring gently for 15 minutes, or until the mixture thickens and the sago is clear. Keep heating time minimal to preserve juice colour.

4. Pour the Rote Grutze into a bowl and allow to set in the fridge.

5. Serve warm or cold with lashings of runny local cream. It will keep for several days in the refrigerator and the consistency will thicken over time.

Tip: your supermarket may not have Sago. Tapioca pearls are a perfect substitute

Recipe inspired by Those Barossa Girls

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