Cape Town has this uncanny ability to catch you off guard and steal your heart away with its surprisingly stunning beauty. If something has managed to put you in a bad mood (like, your apartment building just got broken into, or you can’t get a hold of the Department of Home Affairs for weeks, or the internet connection just isn’t working today, or you read the newspaper), nothing will make it disappear quite like lifting your gaze and beholding the magnificent coastline along the Atlantic Seaboard, especially in the late afternoon as the sun starts to dip and cast the most striking flares of orange against the mountains and glimmering pinks and purples on the ocean. The winding road into Camps Bay brings a smile to my face every time.
Summer is finally upon us and this recipe is bursting with deep, red summer berries. Compote is basically a jam, but slightly runnier, more like a sauce. I decided that the vanilla frozen yogurt in the freezer needed to be dressed up a little. And I had tons of fresh strawberries…
This simple recipe has a subtle undertone of the spice used in many Indian sweets – cardamom – and it’s different enough yet still reminiscent of a regular strawberry sauce. The stewed fruit sweetened with honey takes on a caramelized character, making this compote rich in texture and very pleasing to the palate. It would be lovely with Greek yogurt and nuts for breakfast, but it’s bright colour and flavour make it suitable for a beautiful and healthy dessert. It also pairs nicely with chocolate.
Strawberry Cardamom Compote
2 cups fresh or frozen strawberries
2 Tbsp honey
2-3 cardamom pods, seeds only*
Place the berries, honey and cardamom seeds in a saucepan and add water until they are just covered. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat and let simmer for about 15 minutes, until it has reduced and resembles a thick jam. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Serve on top of regular or frozen yogurt or ice cream.
*To get the seeds out of the cardamom pods, pinch them open. Each pod should have a few seeds in them – this is the fragrant part you want to use. Discard the pod shells.