After dinner tonight take a pass on the cookies and cake and satisfy your sweet tooth by grilling a little fruit on the barbecue. The natural sugars found in fruit caramelize while on the grill for an explosion of sweetness that is sure to please. Grilling fruit is quick and easy – and it’s nutritious too. Here are three recipes to get you started:
Grilled Fruit with Balsamic Vinegar Syrup (from www.mayoclinic.com)
1 small pineapple, peeled, cored and cut into wedges
2 large mangoes, cored and cut in half
2 large peaches, cored and cut in half
Nonstick, butter-flavored cooking spray
2 Tbs brown sugar
½ cup balsamic vinegar
Mint or basil leaves, for garnish
In a large bowl, combine the pineapple, mangoes and peaches. Spray generously with cooking spray. Toss and spray again to ensure the fruit is well coated. Sprinkle with brown sugar. Toss to coat evenly. Set aside.
In a small saucepan, heat the balsamic vinegar over low heat. Simmer until the liquid is reduced in half, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat.
Prepare a hot fire in a charcoal grill or heat a gas grill or broiler. Away from the heat source, lightly coat the grill rack or broiler pan with cooking spray. Position the cooking rack 4-6 inches from the heat source.
Place the fruit on the grill racks or broiler pan. Grill or broil over medium heat until the sugar caramelizes, about 3-5 minutes.
Remove the fruit from the grill and arrange onto individual serving plates. Drizzle with balsamic syrup and garnish with mint or basil. Serve immediately.
Yields: 6 servings
Per Serving: 120 calories, 0 g fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 5 mg sodium, 29 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 1 g protein
Grilled Fruit with Caramelized Orange Sauce (from www.wholefoodsmarket.com)
½ cup orange juice
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp orange zest
2 large peaches or nectarines, pitted and cut into thick wedges
2 ripe but firm bananas, peeled, halved lengthwise then crosswise
1 pineapple, peeled, cored and cut into thick slices
Whisk together juice, sugar and zest in a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer until reduced by half, 6-8 minutes. Set aside to let cool completely.
Meanwhile, grease grill grates with oil and preheat to medium high heat. Working in batches, arrange peaches, bananas and pineapple on grill in a single layer and cook, carefully flipping once, until just hot throughout and golden brown, 2-3 minutes. Transfer fruit to bowls, drizzle with sauce and serve.
Yields: 6-8 servings
Per Serving: 150 calories, 2 g fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 0 mg sodium, 33 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 1 g protein
Grilled Stone Fruit Antipasto Plate (from www.myrecipes.com)
1 Tbs brown sugar
3 Tbs white balsamic vinegar
2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbs fresh lime juice
2 tsp vanilla extract
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
1/8 tsp salt
1/8 tsp hot sauce
1 pound firm black plums, halved and pitted
1 pound firm peaches, halved and pitted
½ pound firm nectarines, halved and pitted
½ pound firm pluots, halved and pitted
Mint sprigs (optional)
Prepare grill. To prepare dressing, combine first 8 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring well with a whisk.
To prepare fruit, place fruit on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 3 minutes on each side. Remove from grill. Drizzle fruit with dressing. Garnish with mint sprigs if desired.
Yields: 8 servings
Per Serving: 129 calories, 4.1 g fat, 1.4 g protein, 23.8 g carbohydrates, 2.9 g fiber, 0 mg cholesterol, 39 mg sodium