I usually don't eat the fruit. The sugar, natural though it is, hits me hard and makes me sleepy within the hour. I love it, but since I have to be picky about it, I admit that I prefer my sugar as cake or bread or ice cream. The fruit I leave for Eugene who would eat it all day long if he could.
But yesterday the scent was too strong. I want this, I thought, but it has to be worth it.
So I made it worth it.
While the fruit cooked, I whipped up some good ricotta (a homemade goat version, though any "fancy" kind will work) with a bit of heavy cream and a splash of orange blossom water. This went in the bowl first topped with the grilled nectarine, some mint and almonds and dried pomegranate. A drizzle of honey. A sprinkle of salt and black pepper.
The flavors came together for a dessert that tasted ambrosial, almost Middle Eastern.
It was worth it.
Grilled Nectarines with Honey, Almonds & Orange Blossom Ricotta
Serves 2, multiply as needed
2 ripe nectarines, cut into quarters, pits removed.
1 cup homemade-style ricotta (the thick dryer kind you buy in a deli or cheese counter, not from the containers in the dairy case)
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon orange blossom water
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 teaspoon honey, plus more for drizzling
Garnishes: 1/4 cup toasted almonds, fresh mint leaves, dried pomegranate seeds, flaky sea salt, black pepper, fresh lemon zest
Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat and brush with coconut oil. Arrange nectarine quarters on pan and let grill 1-3 minutes per side until slightly charred and heated through.
While the nectarines grill, whisk together ricotta, cream, orange blossom water almond, and 1 teaspoon honey until smooth. Spread in the bottom of a bowl or serving platter and top with grilled nectarines.
Drizzle with more honey and sprinkle with garnishes. Serve immediately.