Infusing honey with lavender is a simple way to add some pretty exotic flavor to complement the smokiness of grilled, glazed fruit. (If you can’t find lavender at your market or farmer’s market, try using lavender honey. The flavor will be less distinct but still unique.) Choose slightly under-ripe bananas, the ones that are still a little green, for this recipe. They’ll hold their shape on the grill, and the glaze and caramelization from grilling will give them plenty of sweetness. The peaches, too, should be ripe but not soft, or they will fall apart during cooking. This recipe is a snap if you’ve got a gas grill ready to fire up in the backyard, or if you’ve already made a charcoal fire to cook dinner, you can later use the cooling coals to caramelize the fruit.—Andrea Immer
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
1/2 cup honey
1 small bunch lavender
1 large ripe pineapple, peeled, quartered, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges
3 slightly under-ripe bananas, peeled and sliced in half lengthwise
3 ripe but firm peaches, peeled, halved, pitted, and cut into 1-inch-thick wedges
1 pint vanilla ice cream, optional
1. Combine the butter, honey, and lavender in a small saucepan and heat, whisking occasionally, until the butter is melted and the mixture is just coming to a simmer. Remove from the heat and let sit in the pan for 30 minutes. Remove the lavender and discard. Pour the syrup through a fine strainer and into a bowl or measuring cup to remove any stray lavender leaves.
2. Preheat a gas grill to medium and lightly oil the grate. Put all the fruits on a rimmed baking sheet and brush them with the honey glaze. Grill, brushing once or twice with additional glaze, until the fruit is heated through, slightly tender, and caramelized, turning once, about 4 minutes total for the bananas, 6 minutes for the pineapple and peaches. Serve immediately, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, if desired.
Vouvray from the Loire Valley: Huet, Champalou, Bourillon- D’ Orleans
Sauternes from France : Chateau LaTour Blanche, Baron Philippe de Rothschild, Chateau Rieussec
Recipe © 2004 Andrea Immer. All rights reserved.