It feels like we’ve been talking about the end of summer for a few weeks, but the latest trip to the farmer’s market has us believing there’s still time to enjoy the fruits of the season, literally. We picked up a bunch of nectarines (essentially a fuzz-less peach). They are sweet and juicy, just as expected. Nectarines are a good source of Vitamin C, potassium and beta-carotene, the skin especially. This dish makes for a delicious dessert but honestly, we have grown tired of waiting until the end of the day to enjoy sweet treats. The stone fruit + whipped coconut cream combo has become common but this Citrus-Kissed Date Caramel makes it extra-ordinary! We are super impatient and couldn’t wait to dive in (which is just what we did), but we imagine these would go over so well at a sweet little brunch! Hmm.. we’re getting some ideas!
Grilled Nectarines with Sweet Cream + Citrus-Kissed Date Caramel
gluten-free, soy-free, vegan
3-4 nectarines, peaches, or any other stone fruit
1-13.5 oz. can of Coconut Milk (full fat) or Coconut Cream
8-10 medjool dates, pitted
juice + zest from ½ orange
½ tsp. vanilla extract
3-4 drops of stevia
1½ cups water
for the grilled stone fruit
Halve your fruit and remove pit from center. Coat your grill with oil or spray (so your fruit will not stick) and lay stone fruit cut side down on a medium-hot grill. Flip once and continue to grill just until the fruit is softened and warm, about 4-5 minutes
for the sweet coconut cream
Place your can of coconut milk or cream in the refrigerator overnight. Open the can without agitating or shaking and carefully spoon out the thickened cream. Leave the milky liquid behind (don’t throw it away though! You can totally use this in smoothies or soups) and place the thickened cream in a mixing bowl. Whip for 2-3 minutes, or until light and airy without any lumps. Add 3-4 drops of stevia (or any sweetener of your choice) and place in the fridge until you’re ready to serve the fruit.
for the citrus-kissed caramel syrup
Place pitted dates, orange juice, zest, vanilla and water in a medium saucepan over high heat and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat to low and allow to simmer for 45 minutes. Check back every so often to make sure the heat isn’t too high. If your mixture starts to become dry, just add more hot water. You’ll want the dates to always be covered with liquid. Let the softened date mixture cool to room temperature and then transfer through a cheesecloth lined strainer into a clean saucepan. Squeeze out as much liquid as you can, separating the pulp and setting it aside (this would be an awesome time to make some raw truffles). Warm your date liquid the same as you did earlier – bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until thick like honey or maple syrup. Remove from heat. This syrup will thicken as it cools, you can soften it up by rewarming it.
dollop sweetened coconut cream on top of grilled fruit, drizzle with citrus-kissed date caramel and sprinkle with cacao nibs (for a fun crunch)!