Make the most of remaining summer fruit with compote
As the days of summer dwindle, so does my supply of summer fruit. So I embraced my inner sloth and just threw together something so simple you barely have to be conscious to make it.
The hardest part was locating my cherry pitter, which I'd received as a hostess gift sometime in the '90s from someone who didn't know me well enough to know how seldom that tool would see the light of day.
I only had a few cherries, so the task of pitting them was over before it could become annoying. I threw them into a saucepan, added my two remaining nectarines and what was left of my berry stash and cooked them with a little sugar, lemon and orange zest. Now I've got this lovely, almost labor-free compote and only one task remains. Hint: It involves an ice-cream scoop.
Jessica Harper writes for oneforthetable.com.
2 cups blueberries
2 nectarines, peeled and cut into 1⁄2-inch chunks
1⁄2 cup cherries, pitted and halved
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated orange zest
2 tablespoons water
1⁄2 cup raspberries
Vanilla ice cream, for serving
Place the blueberries, nectarines and cherries in a small saucepan. Add the sugar, lemon juice, orange zest and water.
Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Reduce the heat and let the mixture simmer until it starts to thicken and the fruit is tender, for about 8 minutes. Stir in the raspberries and turn off the heat.
Allow the mixture to cool for 10 minutes. Serve warm, over vanilla ice cream. You can also cool it completely and serve at room temperature or chilled.
Variations: Add a teaspoon or two of Grand Marnier or Framboise. Or serve it over a meringue with whipped cream or pour it on top of pound cake or pancakes.
Makes 4 to 6 servings.