Put the dried fruit in a lidded flameproof casserole, and pour on the hot tea. Add the lemon grass, ginger, bay leaves and allspice. Bring to the boil, cover, and cook in a preheated oven at 170°C/325°F/gas mark 3 for 1 ½ to 2 hours.
Remove from the oven, and allow to cool. Toast the nuts in a heavy frying pan until just crisp and golden.
When the fruit is just warm, stir in the nuts, and the wine, if using it. This is very good served with chilled thick Greek yoghurt.
© 2000 Frances Bissell. All rights reserved.