by Jenn Oliver
Incorporating fruit into your starters and main courses: an untraditional approach
Fruit deserves to have a place outside of dessert. Dessert is often shunned for fear of ingesting too many sugar-filled calories and a myriad other reasons, and sadly fruit is often under-appreciated, being associated only with a guilty, and even naughty, indulgence.
How often do we associate certain fruits solely with pies, tarts, scones, cakes and other sweet delights? Such a view not only limits our appreciation for fruit, but forces upon us a paradigm that fruit should be “improved upon” by making it even sweeter than it already is. Maybe for some acidic fruits, such as certain berries or citrus fruit, this is true, but many are already pleasurably sweet and unfortunately get overlooked as a valid component in other parts of a meal.
What if fruit were the star of other dishes too? Maybe a first course, served with meat, etc.? Some of my favorite dishes involve fruits, and it’s not just for the sweetness – many fruits pair really well with savory items and I think provide a balance to other strong elements. One of my most frequented pairings this summer has been to add herbs and the tang of locally-made goat cheeses to baked or roasted seasonal fruits. The markets are absolutely brimming with succulent produce, and every two weeks it becomes a “new” mad rush to enjoy as many ways as possible: first strawberries, then cherries, then apricots & peaches, and soon plums and other berries will arrive en masse.
And you know what? Sometimes I think the taste of fresh fruit is even more enjoyable when it is not a part of le dessert.
Click here for the recipe.