Any type of grape can be used in cooking, from supermarket varieties such as Thompson seedless green and red flame to blue-black Ribiers and green-to-purple Muscats. Unripe green grapes add a fresh sourness to stews or broths. For ripe or overripe fruit, jam is a common option, especially for red and purple grapes, as are pickles, cocktail syrups and shrubs. Green grapes, which often carry a vegetal note, are great in salads or ceviches. Concords, popular for juice, make a lush filling for pie.
Here are some of our favorite ways to cook with grapes, one of fall’s finest harvests. Check out the Recipe Finder for more ideas.
Concord Grape Pie. Concord grapes are only in season for a short period of time, but it’s possible to make this pie with Thomcords, a hybrid variety that’s available for most of the fall. Either way, the filling bakes up into an ethereal deep purple with a sweetness that’s offset by a crust made from nutty rye flour.
Chicory Salad With Roasted Grapes. Slowly roasting grapes softens their skins, pulls out some of their juices and brings out their multidimensional flavors. The resulting fruit plays nicely with bitter greens, funky blue cheese and a Dijon dressing.
Roasted Fall Fruit With Balsamic Glaze. Alongside other fall favorites, such as pears and figs, roasted grapes provide textural contrast in addition to a sweet-tart note when glazed with honey, balsamic vinegar and ginger. Serve the roasted fruit atop yogurt or oatmeal for breakfast or with ice cream for dessert.
Baked Feta With Grapes. Baking grapes and olives with cheese on top is a riff on a cheese course. In this recipe from Ali Slagle, fennel seeds and crushed red pepper flakes perk up red grapes and Kalamata olives as they roast beneath creamy, salty feta. Serve it as an appetizer or alongside a green salad or roasted chicken for a meal.
Fall Fruit With Port Wine Sauce. Stew and steep grapes, apples and pears in wine scented with orange and cinnamon for a simple and elegant dessert. Serve warm or cooled in glasses or over Greek yogurt or whipped cream.
Chocolate Grapes. Toss cool, dry grapes with melted chocolate, stirring all the while, and watch as the chocolate clings to each orb, creating a candy-like coating in minutes. It’s a fun project for kids and an elegant snack for adults, with a glass of red wine on the side.