Facebook LinkedIn Email Pinterest Twitter Instagram YouTube Icon Navigation Search Icon Main Search Icon Video Play Icon Plus Icon Minus Icon Check Icon Print Icon Note Icon Heart Icon Filled Heart Icon Single Arrow Icon Double Arrow Icon Hamburger Icon TV Icon Close Icon Sorted Hamburger/Search Icon
Ingredient

Grapes

Article Image
Save to Recipe Box
Print
Add Private Note
Saved Add to List

    Add to List

Print
Add Recipe Note

What is it?

Plump and juicy, grapes come in colors ranging from jade green to lustrous blue-black. Wine grapes are harvested to make into wine, while table grapes are selected for sweet, full flavor, thin skins, and little or no seeds. Nearly all American-grown fresh grapes are grown in California and are picked when ripe by hand. Grapes are generally categorized by color and all colors have seedless varieties available.

Grapes are one of those fruits we’ve gotten used to seeing in grocery stores all year long. But those bland, lifeless bunches bear almost no resemblance to the grapes you’ll find at farmers’ markets in the fall season. Like any fruit at its prime, fall grapes are as good as they come: plump, fragrant, juicy—literally bursting with flavor. Fall is also the time of year when you’ll come across the widest variety of grapes, here are a few of our favorites:

Autumn Royal grapes have large, oval-shaped black berries. Sweet and straightforward, these seedless grapes pair well with salty foods like prosciutto and salted nuts.

Champagne grapes have delicate, sweet, pea-size berries that need gentle handling. These seedless grapes are not used in the homonymous French sparkling wine but are so named because they’re thought to resemble tiny bubbles.

Concord grapes have thick skins, juicy flesh, large seeds, and a strong strawberry-like flavor. They come in purple and white varieties and are ideal for juices and jellies.

Green Thompson
grapes are the top seller at the supermarket. Large and seedless, they have firm skins that make them very durable. Their mild flavor pairs well with citrus.

Muscat
grapes usually have seeds and come in black and white varieties. Prized for their honey-floral flavor and perfume, they’re used for both eating (they’re delicious with cheese) and making wine.

Red Flame
grapes are sweet in flavor with a crunchy texture. They’re ideal for both eating out of hand and cooking, as they keep their shape well and acquire a deeper flavor when heated.

How to choose:

Choose clusters that are plump and firm with no bruising, soft spots, or broken skins. Avoid bunches with stems that are toughened or browned with age.

How to prep:

Many grape varieties have a white powdery coating called “bloom”. This delicate natural protection helps keep the grapes form losing moisture so wait to wash them until just before serving. Grapes should be rinsed in a colander under running water.

How to store:

Store grapes loosely covered in plastic wrap (a paper bag will also work) in the refrigerator without washing them. They should last about a week. When ready to eat or use in a dish, let them warm up a bit for the best flavor.

    Recipes

  • Recipe

    Farro, Chicken, and Grape Salad

    Nutty and pleasantly chewy, farro is an ancient variety of wheat usually associated with Mediterranean cooking, especially Italian. In this one-bowl meal, a dressing of mirin and sesame oil gives…

  • Recipe

    Lamb Chops with Concord Grape Sauce

    Ruby port and fresh herbs channel fall in a most lovely way in this company-worthy dish.

  • Recipe

    Shrimp and Avocado Salad with Russian Vinaigrette

    There are worse things in the world than having leftover Russian dressing from our Kimchi Reuben recipe. You can spread it on burgers, drizzle it over steamed mussels, or turn…

  • Recipe

    Grape Clusters with Brie, Gorgonzola, and Honey

    This messy-to-eat-but-totally-worth-it appetizer is a fabulous combination of sweet, salty, herby, and nutty flavors. Use scissors to cut the clusters into individual portions, and serve with plenty of napkins.

  • Recipe

    Seared Scallops with Grape-Mint Relish

    This lovely seafood supper features a bright, citrusy grape relish that beautifully offsets rich scallops. Sautéed greens, like spinach or chard, and crusty bread are the perfect accompaniments.

  • Recipe

    Wild Rice with Roasted Grapes, Pecans, and Sage

    Maple-glazed pecans and balsamic-roasted grapes elevate this wild rice side dish to delicious new heights. Look for balsamic glaze near the vinegars at the supermarket.

  • Recipe

    Endive, Walnut & Grape Salad

    This bright, fresh salad is a wonderful contrast to the other rich dishes in the Nordic Christmas Feast menu. In Scandinavia, chicory (Belgian endive) is called yule salat because we…

  • Recipe

    Fried Goat Cheese Salad with Grapes and Hazelnuts

    This bistro-style salad pairs crispy cakes of fried goat cheese with mildly bitter radicchio, peppery arugula, crunchy hazelnuts, and sweet grapes.

  • Moveable Feast

    Som Tam Phonlamai (Thai Fruit Salad)

    Just one of many examples of som tam that has nothing to do with green papaya (I do like to add some for this rendition, but you could certainly leave…

  • Recipe

    Collard Green Crostini with Blue Cheese and Grape-Apple Relish

    Thick collard greens are easy to eat raw when sliced into confetti-like strips. Sweet fruit relish and tangy blue cheese balance their mild, earthy flavor.

Comments

Leave a Comment

Comments

Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Delicious Dish

Find the inspiration you crave for your love of cooking

Fine Cooking Magazine

Subscribe today
and save up to 44%

Already a subscriber? Log in.

Video

View All

Season 4 Extras

Greenough, Montana (411)

This week’s Moveable Feast saddles up for a chuck wagon dinner in Greenough, Montana. Our host chef Pete Evans joins chef Ben Jones, of Paws Up, and grilling master Rory…

View all Moveable Feast recipes and video extras

Connect

Follow Fine Cooking on your favorite social networks