Recipe: Savor

savor

Technically a conserve, savor is a melange of quince, apple and pear, with almonds and walnuts, plus any other nuts that you like; we used hazelnuts. We also used tiny, wild apples. You want an apple with an astringency and a lot of pectin -- crabapples would work here. This is not a job for golden delicious. Hard pears like seckels are also more appropriate for this. 

The base of the conserve is saba, the reduced juice of wine grapes. Saba is also the base for balsamico. Consequently, it lends a deep, winey flavor to the conserve that makes it more savory. The tannins from the skins and seeds also lend a kind of spiciness. It's amazing with sharp cheeses. 

To make saba, crush your grapes (sangiovese is the preferred grape for saba in Romagna. Any wine grape will do. Avoid sweet table grapes like concords.) in a large pot, making sure to crush all the berries. Bring to a boil. Skim away any stems and some of the skins. Reduce by about half. Strain, and use immediately or refrigerate for future use. 

If you reduce it further to a syrup, saba can be used as sort of a poor man's balsamico. 

Marzia didn't use a precise recipe for this conserve. Simply combine your saba, chopped fruit and nuts into a large pot and bring to a boil. Reduce until thickened. If you like, you can use any of the standard set tests; Marzia did not. Ladle into sterilized jars and process by normal water-bath canning method. 

Savor