Fruity Summer DessertsNovember 28, 2017
It’s summer. Which means parties, which means dessert. Which means… fruity summer desserts for the win! Four of them, to be exact.
With all of these dishes, fruit is the absolute star of the show. Sure, fats and dairy help bring out the sharpness of the fruit, sugar amplifies its flavour, notes of lemongrass and salt provide a counterpoint to keep the mouth zinging. But at the heart of each of these desserts is beautiful, seasonal fruit. With that in mind, make sure to pick up the nicest fruit you can find, and don’t be afraid to experiment if there’s a better seasonal offer. If the plums at your local aren’t looking too flash, go for the soft, yielding nectarines or the perfect peaches!
Strawberry and Yoghurt Panna Cotta
500g thick Greek-style yoghurt
375ml thickened cream
110g caster sugar
2 titanium strength gelatine leaves
300g strawberries, hulled and sliced
Place cream and sugar in saucepan over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Bring to just below boiling point, then remove from heat and stand for 5 minutes to infuse.
Soak the gelatine in cold water for 5 minutes to soften. Squeeze excess water from gelatine and whisk gelatine into warm cream mixture, stirring until dissolved. Whisk in yoghurt, then strain mixture through a fine sieve. Pour into a 4-cup (1 litre) fluted mould, cover with plastic wrap and chill for 3 hours or until just set.
Gently pull panna cotta from sides of tin with your fingertips to loosen. Dip base of mould in hot water, then invert onto a plate and serve topped with strawberries and pistachios.
Mango and Lime Granita
3 large ripe mangoes (560gm each), peeled and diced
Juice and finely grated rind of 1 lemon
Juice and finely grated rind of 1 lime, plus cheeks to serve (optional)
200 gm caster sugar
1 lemongrass stalk, coarsely chopped and bruised with the side of a cleaver
For lemongrass syrup, bring sugar, lemongrass and 500ml water to the boil in a saucepan over high heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Leave to cool and infuse for 1 hour, then strain.
Combine mango and citrus juices, and rind in a blender, add lemongrass syrup and blend until smooth. Strain into a wide, shallow container and freeze overnight. Scrape into crystals with a fork, then return to the freezer. If the granita is hard to scrape, leave it at room temperature briefly to soften first.
Spoon granita into bowls and serve with lime cheeks.
1 free-range egg white
½ a lemon
Stone and quarter the plums, then combine with 100g of sugar in a large heatproof bowl.
Cover tightly with clingfilm and set over a pan of simmering water for about 30 minutes to release the plum juices.
Sieve the plums, pressing down, to release about 300ml juice – top up with water if need be.
Make a sugar syrup by dissolving the remaining sugar in 100ml of boiling water. Pour 100ml into the plum juice.
Beat the egg white until frothy, squeeze in the lemon juice and stir into the plum juice.
Taste, add more syrup if necessary. Churn in an ice cream maker according to the instructions.
Grilled Honey Peaches
4 ripe peaches
4 scoops vanilla ice cream
Sea Salt Flakes
Heat grill to medium high heat.
Halve and destone the peaches.
Brush the peach halves with a touch of with oil and place on the grill for a few minutes and then rotate 90 degrees to continue to cook for about 3-4 minutes total grill marks appear and the fruit starts to caramelise.
Remove from the grill with a pair of tongs and serve some halves with a scoop of ice cream in the center of the fruit. Drizzle with honey and a sprinkle of orange zest and sea salt.