Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Grape Pudding a.k.a Moustalevria

                                                  Grape must pudding a.k.a Moustalevria

It's grape harvest time in my part of the world (Greece) in a little village called Zygos and grape harvest is called Trygos.  Once you have harvested your grapes you process them and make grape must, this the  the first step of wine making.  In Greek must is called moustos, Must has many uses in the Meditteranean cuisine, petimezei ( grape syrup) similiar to molasses, pies, grape must cookies ( moustokouloura) and the most famous, Moustalevria, a pudding made from the grape must, using alevri (flour). My  recipe of moustalevria is organic and gourmet, this is a recipe that dates back to Byzantine times, grape must was a necssary ingredient in all their sweets. 

Our organic grapevine

My grape must, is straight from my father -in - laws grapevine and onto our table. Moustalevria is made in many ways but I chose the most easiest and traditional way.

TIP:  You have to use the grape must immediately before fermentation begins, if you use it after two days you will get a sweet and sour taste.

Grape pudding ak.a Moustalevria

  • 7 cups grape must
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon ashes
  • 1/3 cup crushed walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon

Collect your grape must and place it in a container, leave overnight so it can settle.
The next day take a colander, line it with a cheesecloth or tulle.  Cheese cloth works better but I didn't have one this time. Place it inside the colander and drain your grape must, place in a pot and boil on high until it's half of what you original had. Make sure you add your wood ashes while the grape must is boiling ( in a cheese cloth). The ashes purify the grape must. 

When done boiling drain again using a cheesecloth,  I drained iτ twice allowing it to sit for about an hour each time. You can also allow it to settle over night and drain the following day. Return to heat on medium, add your flour slowly and stir with a whisk  when the pudding thickens remove from heat and place in bowls. 
TIPS: 1) Don't use charcoal ashes ( Very Dangerous) !  Some people use bread instead of ashes, I stick to olive wood ashes, I was informed by  Panagiotes Koutelidakes, an oenologist that you can also use grapevine ashes. He  also informed that wood ashes are rich in potassium, which neutralizes the musts's acidity, and also helod with the the thickening of the pudding. (  USE nothing else just clean wood or grape vine ashes, they are also high in potassium)  I prefer to use olive wood. When you are burning wood it should be clean wood and just wood,  no other materials like napkins, newspaper logs, fake firelogs etc.)   and only use small twigs to start a fire not petroleum or any other substances because the ashes will go into your pudding. 

2) You might not use up all the flour so don't worry if  you have flour left over.

7 cups of grape must,  makes about 4 small bowls.  Your Moustalevria is ready! Add crushed walnuts,cinnamon and serve.


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