Here's a simple way to preserve fruit for many weeks without refridgeration. Just steap fruit in rum and the rest is standard cruising lore, borrowed from a traditional German Christmas. You need fresh fruit, washed and dried, fine granulated sugar, white rum and lidded crock or other container that can be covered, but not sealed. Use only top quality, ripe, firm fruit in season. Good fruits that will retain shape and colour are strawberries, apricots, pears, peaches, mangoes, grapes, and oranges. (Bananas, pears, apples and melons are too mushy, and blueberries will stain everything "blue".)
Preparation: Wash and dry small fruit, peel large fruit and cut into cubes. Remove stems, pits or stones. You may wish to scald very firm fruit.
You may add more fruit by repeating the recipe, and topping up with rum. You may need to place a weighted dish on top to keep the fruit immersed. Spoon over pound cake or ice cream for a special dessert.
If you don't monitor the rum pot, please don't blame me for any problems! If the fruit develops any mould - it will not smell pleasant - THROW IT OUT. To prevent spoilage, keep the mixture acidic. If you don't have citris fruit in your rum pot, add a bit of lemon juice or ascorbic acid - vitamin C powder (also useful for preventing common colds).
* Rumtopf is the original spelling. Cruisers call it rum pot.