Vanilla Poached Figs & Cherries with Coconut Cream

There isn’t much I can say about this dessert other than AMAZING! So I’m just going to cut to the chase and throw you the recipe. Figs and vanilla beans are probably not something you just have lying around the house (oddly enough, I did), but I highly recommend gathering the ingredients and giving this recipe a try. It can serve 4-6 depending on how big you fill your glasses. You can also cut the recipe in half if there are only 2 of you and you don’t want leftovers. The fig and cherry mixture can be made a day in advance as well.

The Good Stuff:

  • 2 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons honey (the darker, the higher nutritional content)
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1.5 cups figs, dried and destemmed
  • 1 1/4 cups fresh cherries (I prefer ranier)
  • 2 cans full fat coconut milk (or coconut cream if you have it)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped pistachios

The How To:

  • Put your cans of coconut milk in the fridge overnight. This will separate the fat from the liquid. If you don’t have that long you can do what I did. I place my in the freezer for about 90 minutes then placed them in the fridge until I was ready for them so they wouldn’t freeze. They were in my fridge for about an hour after being in my freezer and this seemed to work just fine at separating the fat from the liquid. DO NOT shake your cans or you will be remixing the contents which will defeat the whole purpose.
  • Section the figs into small bite size pieces and halve and deseed the cherries.
  • Bring the water to a boil and stir in the honey to dissolve.
  • Take you vanilla bean pod and cut in in half down the middle lengthwise. Then take a butter knife and run it down the inside middle to pull out all of the seeds. Add the seeds and the pod to the boiling water.
  • Turn down the liquid to a simmer and add the figs. Simmer 15-20 minutes until the liquid starts to get thick.
  • Add cherries and simmer another 15 minutes.
  • Pull off the heat and let cool. Transfer to a bowl and place in the fridge until completely chilled (about 3 hours). Again, you can take the Angela short cut, toss it in the freezer and stir every 10 minutes until the mixture is cool. I can’t seem to do anything in advance and typically find myself taking shortcuts.
  • Next, open the cans of coconut milk, being careful not to shake them and scoop off the hardened cream from the top of the can. Place the cream in mixer, being careful not to include any of the liquid.
  • Mix on high 3-5 minutes until the cream is whipped.
  • In a wine or martini glass, layer the fig mixture and whipped cream.
  • Sprinkle with chopped pistachios and serve.

 

Figs are a great source of potassium but are a little high in sugar so be wary with desserts like these. They are a great show piece and perfect for entertaining, but probably not something you want to eat all of the time.

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