Monday, 25 May 2015

Small Wonderful

Albicocche alla Brace con Crema di Ricotta, Yogurt & Menta
Grilled Apricots with Ricotta, Yogurt & Mint Cream

I don't know about you, or your eating habits... I only know about mine and those of my family and friends... And usually, dessert is something of an exception, something for a special occasion. Usually, we have already eaten plenty of good stuff and simply can not manage anymore-lol!

But seriously, often, the thought of another dish, especially if it is going to be a rich and sugary one, is not always what people want. So, instead of forcing something onto my guests that might actually spoil their enjoyment of a good meal than enhance it, something small, like this is a perfect "sweet" ending to go with a nice espresso... Fresh and light and full of sunshine!

You can easily prepare the apricots in advance and whip these up in no time if you manage to convince those guests that don't want a full dessert... Or alternatively make the whole thing whilst they watch! This is a "simple as 1-2-3" kinda thing... And if you keep on scrolling, you will find out what those 1-2-3 things are!


To make these, you are going to need apricots, almonds, a little ricotta and yogurt, some fresh mint and a little honey to sweeten it with. For 10 apricots, I needed just s tablespoons each of ricotta and yogurt and there was plenty left to do a few more... It never ceases to amaze me just how little you need sometimes, to make the most wonderful things!

I thought it would be a nice addition, to place a toasted almond into the middle of each apricot in the place of the missing stone... Looks lovely, tastes great in combination and adds a yummy crunch to the whole affair.

Step one of course is to halve those apricots and remove the stones... This is also the time to take note of how juicy and firm they really are, so that you can grill them accordingly.

I placed mine onto a very hot griddle and slid them immediately to and fro in the direction of the ridges in the pan, so that they would slide along and sear and not simply stick. Do not grill them for too long... Apricots are delicate little things! Just 1-2 minutes at the most, until they have some slight scorch marks. Set to one side to cool and then toast the almonds whilst they do so. This will give them a chance to let the juices and sweetness that develop come to the surface... That is what the grilling does! It's a great way to bring out the natural sweetness and add a slightly caramelized flavor to the apricots... So simple yet so delicious!

Now it's time to whisk up that cream... Simply chop plenty of mint as finely as you can, whisk it into the ricotta and yogurt until smooth and add honey to taste. And yes, having a whisk that looks like a little tweety bird helps.

It is best to chill the cream and the apricots before serving... But probably you won't be able to wait...mat least that was the way it was for me today!  


And then of course it is simply a case of spooning a little of the minty cream onto the middle of each apricot and garnishing with a toasted almond... An occasional small sprig of mint here and there will brighten everything up and make it look pretty... But those 3 simple ingredients will taste excellent all by themselves! And one last thing... Yes, absolutely DO eat those leaves of mint! But for sure!

Guaranteed to put a smile on your face! So simple that... What's not to like? Go ahead and enjoy!

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