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Jams and Marmalades
Sweet and Sour Dessert/Agrodolce (with raisins, dried figs, walnuts, prunes, apples, wine and vinegar)
Originated from: Molise, Italy
Occasion: St. Joseph's Day
Contributed by: Taken from Rizzi DeFabo's cookbook, "Cooking with Rizzi" (Crabtree Press, 2010)

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1 pound dark raisins
12 ounces dried figs, stems removed
1 pound walnuts
9 ounces prunes
1 loaf Italian bread, grated
zest of 1 large orange
3 pounds red or green apples, peeled, cored and chopped
1 quart, plus 1/3 cup red homemade wine, or wine that has gone to vinegar
2/3 cup vinegar, wine, or cider
1 (18-ounce) jar grape jelly
1 1/2 cups honey
2 cups sugar


Grind raisins, figs, walnuts, and prunes in a meat grinder or food processor until coarse.

Place in a large, heavy stock pot.

To grate bread, cut loaf into small pieces.

Use a hand grater or put small portions of bread in a food processor (using the chopping blade) and process until fine.

Add grated bread, orange zest and chopped apples to stock pot.

Mix very well with a wooden spoon until wll blended.

Add wine, vinegar, jelly, honey, and sugar.

Mix well.

Cook over very low heat for about 30 minutes, stirring often to keep mixture from burning.

Remove from heat and set aside to cool.

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Serve cold or at room temperature.

YIELD: 14 (1-cup) servings


This recipe was taken from Rizzi DeFabo's cookbook, "Cooking with Rizzi" (Crabtree Press, 2010) with the expressed permission of the author, an award-winning Italian-American chef and owner of "Rizzo's Malabar Inn." "Rizzo's Malabar Inn" is located in southwestern Pennsylvania (126 Rizzo Road, Crabtree, Salem Township). The food served at this restaurant, a local landmark dating back to the 1920s, reflects the culinary traditions of Abruzzo and Molise. Rizzi DeFabo notes in his cookbook "Agroddolce, one of the sweets on the Saint Joseph's menu, is made to represent the bitterness and sweetness of life. Although served as a dessert, this dish is excellent on morning toast. The recipe may be divided in half for a smaller quantiy." Photo: Mary Melfi.

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