Natural Wine Charoset

March 28, 2022
1 Ratings
Photo by Linda Pugliese
  • Prep time 4 hours 15 minutes
  • Cook time 10 minutes
  • Serves 8 to 10 as a side
Author Notes

Randy Newman once sat next to my ex-boyfriend in a West Village bar and told him to watch out for shiksas because they are nothing but trouble. I didn’t want to mess with an essential component of a seder plate too much, especially when I still have trouble making the “ch” sound, but I wanted to make it feel like it was my own. Cooking the wine mellows and sweetens the flavor without using sugary Manischewitz or adding too much of a sweetener, and dicing the apples and waiting to toss the walnuts in until ready to serve will give this charoset lots of texture. It’s absolutely delicious with spicy hot horseradish and bitter greens on matzo. —Jess Damuck

What You'll Need
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Natural Wine Charoset
  • 1 1/2 cups (360 milliliters) good fruity juicy natural red wine, such as a Gamay
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 tablespoon (heaped) honey
  • 3 apples (I like Honeycrisp)
  • 5 Medjool dates
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (150 grams) toasted walnuts
  • Matzo, for serving
  1. In a small saucepan, combine the wine, cinnamon sticks, and honey. Bring to a boil over medium high heat and then reduce to a simmer. Cook until reduced to about ½ cup (120 milliliters), 10 to 15 minutes. Let cool to room temperature.
  2. Meanwhile, core, peel, and finely dice the apples, putting them in a big serving bowl as you go. Chop up the dates and stir them in. Pour the cooled wine mixture over the top, remove the cinnamon sticks, stir, and season with salt.
  3. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours, up to overnight.
  4. Stir in the toasted walnuts just before serving, with matzo.

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1 Review

Nancy April 1, 2022
Great author note!