Chilled Poached Apricots with Whipped Cream
Muscat syrup and whipped cream with cardamom enhance poached apricots.Apricots from the garden or farmers' market are usually small. Use two or three halves per person, depending on the size of the fruit.
- 1 bottle (375 milliliters) Muscat de Beaumes-de-Venise (1 1/2 cups)
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 8 to 12 apricots (about 1 pound), halved and pitted
- 1 cup heavy cream, well chilled
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom (optional)
Bring wine, water, and sugar to a simmer in a medium saucepan over high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Add apricots, pushing down gently, so fruit is submerged. Reduce heat to medium, and let simmer just until apricots are tender, 2 to 4 minutes, depending on ripeness and size of fruit.
Using a slotted spoon, gently transfer apricots to a dish. Pour in enough poaching liquid to cover fruit (about 1 cup), and cover with parchment. Let remaining liquid simmer over medium-high heat until reduced by half and lightly syrupy, about 10 minutes; strain. Refrigerate apricots and syrup separately, for 30 minutes.
Just before serving, beat cream until soft peaks form. Gently whisk in 1/4 cup cooled syrup, and season with cardamom if desired. Divide apricots among 8 dessert bowls, and drizzle with syrup. Top each with a large dollop of whipped cream.