Saturday, November 29, 2008

Fresh Fig, Apple & Date Dessert

This dessert is totally out of season now, but with such a low sugar content, only in the marzipan, I just couldn't resist posting it.

Sweet Mediterranean figs and dates combine especially well with crisp dessert apples to create this appetizing dessert. A hint of almond serves to unite the flavours.

Serves 4


6 large apples
juice of 1/2 lemon
175g / 6 oz fresh dates
25g / 1 oz white marzipan
5 ml / 1 tsp orange flower water
60 ml / 4 tbsp natural yogurt
4 ripe green or purple fresh figs
4 whole almonds, toasted


1) Core the apples. Slice them thinly, then cut into thin matchsticks. Put into a bowl, sprinkle with lemon juice to keep them white and set aside.

2) Remove and discard the stones from the dates and cut the flesh into thin strips, then combine with the apple slices. Toss to mix.

3) In a small bowl, soften the marzipan with the orange flower water and combine this with the yogurt. Mix well.

4) Pile the mixed apples and dates into the centre of four plates. Remove and discard the stem from each of the figs and cut the fruit into quarters without cutting right through the base. Squeeze the base with the thumb and forefinger of each hand to open up the fruit.

5) Place a fig in the centre of each apple and date salad, spoon in some yogurt filling and decorate each portion with a toasted almond. Serve.

Cook's Tip:
When choosing fresh dates, select those that are fat and shiny, with skins that are golden and smooth. You may wish to remove the skin by squeezing the stem end, but the figs, however, have thin skins that are edible.

This recipe is from Italy's 500 Best-Ever Recipes edited by Jeni Wright.

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