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Honey Baked Nectarines with Vanilla Bean Marscapone

This morning at the markets my nose caught whiff of some delightfuly fragrant nectarines. Looking very pretty in their orange and yellow hues, I purchased a big bag full and headed home to flick through some recipes.

For those of you that are not nectarine savvy, here are a few tips; nectarines are one of those fruits that you should buy ripe – they do not ripen well if picked/purchased when they are not perfectly ready to eat. To choose the best nectarines, go by scent and touch, they should feel soft and give slightly when you feel them. And finally, they are best stored at room temperature because they lose flavour in the fridge.

This dish is an easy Summer dessert, the baking brings out the full flavour of the fruit and the vanilla seeds and orange juice compliment it beautifully. The deep colours of the nectarines make it a gorgeous looking dish too – perfect for your next Summer dinner party!

Ingredients
.88 ounces/25 grams unsalted butter, coarsely chopped
6 nectarines, pitted, halved
3.5 ounces/100 grams honey
4 cardamom pods, bruised
1/2 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
1 cup orange juice
rind of an orange, thinly peeled

Vanilla Bean Marscapone
226 grams/8 ounces of marscapone
3 tablespoons icing (powdered/confectioners) sugar
1/2 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped

Mix the icing sugar and vanilla bean seeds through the marscapone and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Preheat oven your oven to 375f. Scatter butter pieces across the base of your baking dish – your dish should be big enough for all the nectarines to fit snugly in a single layer. Place all nectarines, cut side up over the butter. Whisk vanilla bean seeds into orange juice and pour over the top. Scatter cardamom pods and orange rind on top of the nectarines and drizzle with honey.

Bake for about 20 minutes, until warm and golden and remove from oven. Serve warm with Vanilla Bean Marscapone on the side.

Notes: Whilst I love the marscapone with this dish, there is a healthier option and that is yogurt. Substitute the marscapone for a thick, Greek style plain yogurt and continue with the recipe.

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