A prolonged winter seems to have burned directly into hot, hot summer weather here on the Front Range, and I can't be bothered cooking anything for dinner. Instead, the patio in the back yard has become the scene of our nocturnal snacks: wine, cheese, and crusty bread. I decided to throw these spiced grapes into the mix and discovered that, not only are they delicious, but the extra honey sauce is terrific drizzled over cheese and bread.
This recipe is adapted from Patrica Wells' latest cookbook, Salad as a Meal.
8 ounces small black grapes
1 cup lavender honey
½ cup red wine vinegar
4 bay leaves
3 whole star anise
Cut the grapes into small clusters of 6-8 grapes each. Arrange in a large jar. In a small saucepan, bring remaining ingredients to a simmer over medium-low heat. Stir and simmer 1 minute.
Allow sauce to cool and pour over grapes. Refrigerate 1 week before sampling, then store up to 6 months.