Taking a cue from Michael's wholesome vege box-clearing savoury potluck dish, I pulled together a simple fruit-based dessert. A gentle bake with just a light sprinkle of sugar evened out the softness of these slightly bruised and misshapen nectarines and apricots, and drew out a lovely thick syrup. I threw in a little ground ginger and some sugar-coated pistachios for extra bite. The sugar was coconut sugar (a gift from Steph!). It added some pleasant, almost woody, notes to the nuts. Brown sugar would be a simpler alternative.
This dish provided a nice interlude between the many rich chocolatey offerings at the potluck. I'd like to think that it'd hold up as a stand-alone dessert too, possibly topped with a small dollop of yoghurt, cream or ice cream.
Syrupy stone fruit
Preheat at oven to 180°C. Wash 5 nectarines and 6 apricots. Slice them into halves or quarters, removing the stone and placing the segments in a single layer in a baking dish. Sprinkle over 2 teaspoons of ground ginger and 2 tablespoons of coconut sugar. Bake the fruit until they're soft and their juices are released into the pan, about 15-20 minutes. Allow the fruit to cool; the juices should thicken.
Spread a sheet of baking paper on a bench. In a small saucepan, cook a small handful of pistachios and a generous tablespoon of coconut sugar over medium-high heat, stirring regularly, until the sugar is melted and coats the nuts. Be careful not to burn the sugar! Turn the nuts onto the baking paper and allow them to cool. Chop or crush the pistachios roughly, then sprinkle them over the baked fruit just before serving.