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FRESH FIGS AND RASPBERRIES WITH MINT-INFUSED GANACHE
from "Smith & Hawken: The Gardeners' Community Cookbook" by Victoria Wise

Alice Medrich, founder of Cocolat Chocolate stores and cookbook author, has made her fame with her exquisite, fanciful chocolate concoctions. For this garden cooking book, she offers a dessert of fresh fruit cozily tucked in a blanket of ganache. She explains, "Chocolate melted with fresh cream is called ganache. For the infusion, fresh peppermint with bright green leaves, rather than the rusty-edged spearmint, is what we are looking for here. Toss out all prior notions about mint-flavored chocolate. Use a very nice quality chocolate and expect a revelation. Serve this simple but sophisticated dessert in rustic earthenware bowls or your best stemmed crystal. Some might be inclined to gild the lily with a little bitty dollop of whipped cream."

-Alice Medrich (Berkeley, CA)

Serves 6-8
INGREDIENTS (CLICK TO BUY)

3/4 cup heavy (whipping) cream
1/3 cup chopped fresh peppermint leaves
6 ounces quality bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
12 ripe fresh figs, quartered
3/4 cup fresh raspberries
1/3 cup slivered or sliced almonds, toasted
6 to 8 good-looking small peppermint sprigs, for garnish

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PREPARATION

1. Combine the cream and chopped mint in a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, cover the pot, and allow the mint to steep in the cream for 5 minutes.
2.Place the chocolate in a bowl and set a strainer over it. When the cream has steeped, pour it through the strainer, pressing gently on the mint to extract all the cream. Discard the mint.
3. Gently stir the cream-and-chocolate mixture until it is perfectly smooth and all the chocolate is melted. Let cool just until the consistency of a thick sauce.
4.Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the sauce into 6 to 8 individual bowls. Scatter the figs and raspberries over the sauce. Drizzle the remaining sauce over the fruit. Sprinkle with the toasted almonds, garnish with the mint sprigs, and serve.
Note You can cool the ganache completely and re-warm it very gently in its pan set over another pan of barely simmering water.
Stuffed Fig Variation Cut figs into halves instead of quarters. Cool the ganache to a soft, spreadable consistency. Spread a mound of the ganache on the cut surface of each fig and sprinkle with toasted almonds.



Buy The Ingredients
Product nutrition and information
 Quantity Ingredients Est.Price
  Organic Valley Heavy Whipping Cream - $4.29/ea
 1 pint
 
  Organic Mint - $2.49/ea
 0.75oz
 
  Baker's Unsweetened Baking Chocolate Squares - $3.99/ea
 4oz
 
  Fresh Black Mission Figs - $5.99/pkg
 Farm Fresh, 1 pint
 
  Driscoll's Raspberries - $3.99/pkg
 6oz, Farm Fresh, 1/2 pint
 
  FreshDirect Blanched Almond Slices - $7.99/10oz
 Resealable Bag
 
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