Sunday, November 23, 2014

Leftover White Wine Syrup #SundaySupper

Sweet vanilla orange syrup with a tart finish from the dry white wine is beautiful drizzled over ice cream, soaked into a pound cake or stirred into an after dinner coffee.

Leftover wine? 
I can hear you now because I have said similar, “What is this leftover wine of which you speak?” Does. Not. Compute. But if you are having a dinner party, and guests bring wine, chances are that several bottles will get opened because one person prefers un-oaked Chardonnay and another likes a sweeter Riesling, while a third guest’s tipple of choice with turkey is a crispy Sauvignon Blanc. Put me in that last category, unless you are offering a quality red, which I will take over any white, any day, even with poultry. The fact of the matter is that sometimes, when the guests go home in a timely fashion, you can tidy the kitchen and put your feet up with the last glass of your preferred wine, but you might still have leftovers in the bottles you aren’t crazy about.

Here’s the solution: a white wine syrup with sugar and vanilla and orange peel that can be served over ice cream or used to drench a pound cake or can even be bottled up as a hostess gift for the next round of parties. And that’s what I call thinking ahead!

Today our Sunday Supper group is looking ahead to Thanksgiving leftovers and making them into more fabulousness. Many thanks Jennie of The Messy Baker for hosting this event. Make sure you scroll down to see the whole link list.

This recipe is adapted from Real Simple.

1 vanilla bean
3 1/8 cups or 750ml assorted white wines
1 cup or 225g golden caster sugar (White sugar can be substituted but the unrefined stuff adds more flavor.)
Zest of 1 orange
Pinch sea salt

Split the vanilla bean lengthwise and scrape out the seeds.

Peel just the orange part off of the orange peel, making sure to leave the bitter white pith behind.

In a large saucepan, combine the wine, sugar, orange zest and vanilla seeds and pod.

Bring to a boil.

Then reduce heat and simmer until the wine mixture is slightly thickened and reduced to about 1 cup or 240ml, 35 to 45 minutes.

Put a heatproof strainer over the pot and use tongs to remove the vanilla pod and the pieces of orange zest and put them in the strainer. Allow them to drain completely. You don't want to waste even a drop of this precious syrup.

If you want to save them for a further purpose, the vanilla bean and orange zest can be placed on parchment paper and allowed to dry completely. Add the vanilla bean to sugar in a closed container to flavor the sugar. The orange zest can be used for cake or cupcake decoration.

Pour the syrup into a sterilized jar and screw the lid on tight. It will thicken even more as it cools.

This is beautiful syrup, speckled with vanilla seeds and shimmering with delicious flavor. Drizzle it over ice cream or mascarpone with fruit for an elegant dessert.


Are you already anticipating those Thanksgiving leftovers? Frankly, the leftovers are almost my favorite part. Have a look at these great recipes that turn your leftovers into something special!

Main Dish

Side Dishes


Condiments & Sauces


Cocktails & Drinks

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