Want to eat healthy, but reluctant to skip dessert? Fear not—these tasty recipes that a trio of local chefs shared with Bergen Health & Life will satisfy your sweet tooth without derailing your diet.
CHEF CESAR SOTOMAYOR
Village Green Restaurant, Ridgewood
serves 5 to 7
5 sheets of gelatin 4 cups heavy cream 1 cup granulated sugar 1 vanilla bean 2 cups buttermilk
- Soften the sheets of gelatin in cold water for 5 to 7 minutes.
- In a saucepan, combine cream, sugar and the vanilla bean; bring to a boil, then remove from heat.
- Place buttermilk in a bowl. Squeeze out the gelatin and add it to the buttermilk.
- Slowly add the hot cream mixture to the buttermilk and stir until dissolved.
- Pour mixture into a large mold and chill overnight.
Harvest Bistro & Bar, Closter
ROASTED PEACHES STUFFED WITH APRICOT
FOR THE SUGAR SYRUP:
1 pound sugar 1 pint water 1 vanilla bean
- Put the sugar in a pot on the stove with the vanilla bean and 3⁄4 of the water. Bring to a boil and stir (will start to “caramelize”) until color changes to light brown.
- While stirring, add remaining water, cook for 40 seconds and turn off heat.
FOR THE APRICOT STUFFING:
8 ounces dried apricots 1 cup sugar syrup (described above) 1 tablespoon butter 1⁄4 cup apricot brandy Pinch of salt Small bunch of thyme, chopped
- Heat apricots in hot water until soft, approximately 10 minutes.
- Strain and slice the apricots, then add remaining ingredients.
- Cook over medium heat for 5 to 6 minutes; turn off heat and set aside.
FOR THE PEACHES:
6 peaches 1 cup sugar syrup (described above) 1 tablespoon butter
- Cut peaches in half. Remove the pit and discard, then peel the peaches (save the skins).
- Place peaches into simmering water for 5 to 6 minutes.
- Remove peaches and set them into an ice bath (a large bowl with water and ice).
- In a pan on medium heat, add sugar syrup and butter.
- Rest the peaches in the saucepan and cook for 3 to 4 minutes. Remove and place the peaches in a hotel pan covered with aluminum foil.
FOR THE PEACH SAUCE:
Skins of 6 peaches 2 cups peach Schnapps or peach juice
- On low heat, cook the Schnapps/juice and skins over low heat until the mixture begins to boil.
- Once it reaches a boil, turn off the burner, blend the mixture with a hand blender and strain.
- On a plate, place half of a peach and fill with 1 tablespoon apricot filling. Cover with the other peach half.
- Drizzle with 2 tablespoons peach sauce. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
CHEF HANS EGG
Saddle River Inn, Saddle River
Serves 6 to 8
1 cup simple syrup (described below) 2 pints ripe strawberries 2 tablespoons Grand Marnier
- To make the simple syrup, combine equal amounts water and sugar in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Allow all sugar crystals to dissolve completely. Remove from heat and let cool.
- Puree the strawberries using a food processor or blender.
- Add the simple syrup and Grand Marnier and blend until well combined.
- In an ice cream maker, spin the mixture according machine’s directions until smooth and creamy. (If you do not have an ice-cream maker, mix all the ingredients in a blender until smooth, then place in an airtight con- tainer in the freezer until firm.)
- Store in the freezer in an airtight container until ready to use. • Serve over sliced bananas or man- goes if desired.