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Wolfgang Puck Recipes
So much summer cooking, from everyday family meals to weekend entertaining, revolves around the grill. I recently shared with you the idea that you don't have to confine your grilling simply to main courses, offering a wonderful grilled eggplant recipe you can serve as a first course or side dish.
Let's complete the menu with this ginger-spiced grilled peaches with ice cream and crushed raspberries dessert recipe from the grill!
That's right. It can be as easy to grill your dessert as it is the other courses of your meal. And I don't mean making s'mores.
Many kinds of summer fruit are especially delicious when grilled. Think about it a moment, and grilling fruit makes perfect sense. After all, most fruit is firm, well capable of standing up to the direct heat of a live fire. Better still, the sugars in the fruit will caramelize during grilling, producing deliciously rich, complex flavors.
Summer's larger specimens of stone fruit make ideal candidates for the grill. I like to look for good-sized peaches, nectarines, or plums, big enough to rest on the cooking grid comfortably without danger of falling through. (Cutting a small slice off their curved side after peeling, halving, and pitting the fruit helps to keep them steady.) Other good candidates include halved and cored apples and pears, thick slices of mango, and cross-section slices of peeled fresh pineapple.
To help preserve moisture as much as possible during cooking, I marinate my fruit for a few hours before grilling. The marinade mixture of sugar, sweet spices, and a little water and lemon juice (you could also use a splash of a sweet late-harvest wine you also plan to drink with dessert) also adds extra flavor and promotes the development of a golden-brown, slightly crispy caramelized crust.
The still-hot but dying embers of your grill fire after the main course has been eaten provide an ideal temperature for grilling the fruit. Just be sure to scrub the cooking grid thoroughly before you put the fruit on, so they won't pick up any stray flavors, and give the fruit a light coat of nonstick spray or flavorless vegetable oil to keep them from sticking.
Grilled fruit are delicious just as they are when they come off the grill. But it's easy to prepare embellishments while they're marinating or even in the few minutes it takes for the fruit to cook. In the recipe here, while the peach halves grill I quickly mash some fresh raspberries on the platter I'll use for serving the fruit; then, on the platter, I top each peach half with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream before garnishing with toasted almonds.
Let your imagination run wild coming up with your own variations!
Ginger-Spiced Grilled Peaches with Ice Cream & Crushed Raspberries
Prep Time: 30 minutes (plus 2 to 4 hours wait time)
Cook time: 15 minutes
Yield: Serves 6 to 8
Ginger-Spiced Grilled Peaches with Ice Cream & Raspberries Ingredients
16 medium-sized ripe-yet-firm organic freestone peaches
1/4 cup light-brown sugar
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon water
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 cup sliced almonds
10 ounces fresh organic raspberries
1 pint vanilla ice cream
Ginger-Spiced Grilled Peaches with Ice Cream & Raspberries Recipe Instructions
At least 2 hours before you plan to cook the peaches, begin marinating them.
Use a swivel-bladed vegetable peeler to remove the skin from the peaches. With a small, sharp knife, cut a slice 1/4 inch thick from opposite sides of each half, to keep the halves resting on the grill without rolling around.
Cut the peaches in half lengthwise along their seams, twisting the halves apart, and discard the pits. Set the halves aside.
In a shallow non-reactive container large enough to hold all the halves in a single layer, whisk together the light-brown and granulated sugars, ginger, cinnamon, water, and lemon juice. When the sugars have dissolved, place the peach halves cut side down in the marinade. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 2 to 4 hours.
Meanwhile, put the sliced almonds in a small dry skillet over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring continuously, until toasted golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes, taking care not to overcook. Immediately transfer to a heatproof plate to cool. Set aside.
Preheat the grill to moderate heat.
If cooking the peaches after a main course, scrub the grill thoroughly clean. Lightly slick the cooking grid with a long-handled brush or a clean cloth dipped in a little flavorless vegetable oil.
Carefully place the peach halves cut side down on the grill. Cook for about 2 minutes and, with a long-handled spatula, carefully lift each half and rotate it 90 degrees without flipping, to give it attractive crosshatching, and cook for 2 minutes longer.
Flip the peaches over, cook for 2 minutes, rotate, and cook for 2 minutes longer.
Then, test for doneness by inserting a long wooden toothpick, which should enter easily. If the peaches still feel firm, cook 1 to 2 minutes longer.
When you turn the peaches for the last time, place 1 cup of the raspberries in the center of a serving platter. Mash with the back of a fork just until the berries are coarsely pureed.
Place the grilled peaches cut side up on top of the mashed raspberries.
Garnish the edges of the platter with the remaining whole raspberries. Place a small scoop of vanilla ice cream in the center of each peach half. Sprinkle with toasted almonds and serve immediately.
Ginger-Spiced Grilled Peaches with Ice Cream & Raspberries - Wolfgang Puck Dessert Recipes
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