At the market this week, the last of the stone fruits could be seen in the abundance of peaches, plums, and nectarines piled high at the market stalls. With that in mind, I decided to take a couple of plums and use them for the last time. This dessert was a quick concoction of the best available fruits I could find. This is a microwave pistachio sponge cake, pistachio ice cream, strawberry sauce, poached plums, fraises de bois, lakewood green grapes, and a bit of fennel flowers. Very simple and light. The pistachio is a great flavor to pair with fruits as it contrasts nicely with the wild strawberries, plums, and grapes. Im obsessed with the lakewood green grapes, as they are crunchy, sweet, tart, and so addictive. The plums were poached in a mixture of sugar, water, and Maker's Mark. Sweet and bit boozy. The microwaveable cake is great, as it is served warm and fluffy. Basically, a mixture of eggs, egg whites, sugar and pistachio paste are mixed in the blender and poured in a whipped cream dispenser. Put batter in a paper cup and microwave. Fresh cake! The texture is fluffy due to the aeration and it's ready in less than 30 seconds. Warm cake, ripe fruits, and creamy ice cream, what more can you ask for?
Fall has come quickly. Breezy days and brisk summer nights require a sweater. Shorts are no longer an option. September is here and so are beautiful fall days. I find September always a chaotic season in terms of it being a big change from the lazy days of Summer. Suddenly you're preparing for the busiest time of the year and there's always a bit of chaos. It feels too early for Fall, but too late for all things Summer. My menu reflects this transitional period in terms of offerings. I find it too early for pumpkin and pears. The first fruits of the season are not always the best. Grapes are king now. Nothing taste better than a bunch of cold grapes, the crunch of tart grape skin, the jelly inside, the sweet and tangy flavor that elicits you to eat more. This is a brown butter clafoutis, concord grapes, anise hyssop greek yogurt, elderberry sauce, orange jelly, red currants, and lemongrass ginger ice cream. I love the licorice-like flavor of anise hyssop and the contrast to concord grapes. Clafoutis is a rustic cake usually studded with fruit, but I love the plain cake itself with fresh fruit. This brown butter clafoutis is floral, and pairs well with the lemongrass and ginger ice cream, my current obsession. Elderberries are interesting, as they are sweet with a bitter finish, not at all unpleasant. I added quite a bit of St. Germain to the sauce just to pair elderflower with elderberry.