Perfect as a snack or a quick winter dessert, this recipe is a fabulous combination of contrasting tastes, textures and colours. Medjool dates are naturally sweet, however their fibre content and the addition of mascarpone in this dish help to lessen the impact on blood glucose levels. If you prefer a dairy-free version, try using a cashew based cheese or nut butter as a substitute for the mascarpone.
Adapted from The Zuni Cafe Cookbook by Judy Rodgers by Nourish cook and Dietitian, Clare Gray.
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 5 minutes
3 tablespoons raw, shelled pistachios
8 Medjool dates
4 tablespoons mascarpone cheese
zest of 1 unwaxed lemon, finely grated
4 clementines or tangerines
2 medium oranges or blood oranges
1 teaspoon orange blossom water
2 tablespoons honey. Heather honey works especially well, optional
Preheat the oven to 175°C.
Place the pistachios on a baking sheet and toast for approximately 5 minutes, set a timer so they don’t brown or burn.
Remove from the oven and once cooled, chop roughly Half the pomegranate, hold the cut piece in your hand over a mixing bowl and tap the outside of the pomegranate firmly with a wooden spoon or rolling pin to extract the seeds.
Pick out any of the bitter white membrane that may have dropped into the bowl. Set aside.
Using a small sharp knife, cut off the top and bottom of the citrus fruits you are using.
Cut away the peel and pith by slicing down the outside from the top to the bottom, following the contour of the fruit.
Cut across the fruit in thin slices. Alternatively, cut individual segments from the fruit or do a mixture of both.
Catch any of the juice from the fruit and add this to the pomegranate seeds.
Slit each date open, on one side only and remove the stone but keep it whole.
Mix the lemon zest and orange blossom water into the mascarpone and stuff each date with the mixture.
To assemble, scatter the clementine and orange segments over a plate and place the dates on top of the citrus. Scatter over the toasted pistachios and pomegranate seeds.
Finish by drizzling with honey.