Poached Fruit Compote

Many fruits definitely benefit from being poached in a fragrant liquid. I wrote this recipe with a combination of peaches, apples, and plums, but there are no rules regarding which fruits to use. I recommend that you choose firm, slightly underripe fruits as they will hold up better to the long, slow poach and will soften and become delicately flavored. I served this gorgeous colorful dessert for Sukkot. It was a true celebration of the season and bounty of fruit. This delicious poached fruit compote can be served warm with ice cream or topped with yogurt and granola for a scrumptious breakfast. It’s equally delicious cold.–Laura Frankel

LC Lovely Little Lemon Technique Note

The author offers some swell advice that will ensure you get the best out of a lemon. This is sorta old news if you work with lemons a lot. But if you don’t, listen up. “First grate the zest with a Microplane, then cut the lemon in half and squeeze the juice,” she says. Anyone who’s ever tried to do it in the opposite order—juicing and then attempting to grate zest from an uncooperative, floppy lemon peel—will tell you it’s no easy task and will likely end up with you scraping off half a phalange. Much safer to do it her way, while the lemon is intact and plump.

Special Equipment: Slow cooker

Poached Fruit Compote Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 20 M
  • 2 H, 20 M
  • Makes 8 servings


  • 3 large firm peaches
  • 2 large apples, such as Honeycrisp
  • 2 large firm plums (I prefer the oval-shaped Italian plums, but any variety of plum will be delicious here)
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 bottle (750 ml) sweet white wine, such as Moscato
  • 1 large rosemary sprig
  • 6 whole black peppercorns (about 1/4 teaspoon)
  • Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon


  • 1. Preheat a slow cooker to high.
  • 2. Combine the peaches, apples, plums, sugar, wine, rosemary, peppercorns, and lemon zest and juice in the slow cooker insert. Stir to help dissolve the sugar.
  • 3. Cut a piece of parchment paper that will fit into the slow cooker and cover the surface of the fruits. Weight down the parchment lightly with an empty pie plate. This keeps the fruits down in the poaching liquid as they are quite buoyant.
  • 4. Cover and cook on high for 2 hours.
  • 5. Gently remove the poached fruit with a slotted spoon and set aside to cool until you can handle them. Peel off the skins. Cut the fruit in half and remove any pits or cores using a melon bailer. Spoon the poached fruit into dessert glasses, bowls, or wineglasses. Serve with your choice of garnish. (The poached fruit compote can be stored, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, or frozen for up to 1 month. Once the fruit is gone, the poaching liquid can be stored, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks, and used again to poach more fruit.)
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