Holiday meals, whether at home or at my grandmother’s, always concluded with a small bowl of stewed dried fruits perfectly sweetened and laced with cinnamon. Homemade chocolate wafers turn this delicious, unpretentious pear and cranberry compote into an elegant, alluring dessert perfect for holidays or company meals. Recipe contributed by Zel Allen, from Vegan for the Holidays. Photos by Jennifer Strohmeyer of Virtually Vegan Mama.
Peaches are at their best from mid- to late summer. Make sure to get them already almost or perfectly ripe. Rock-hard peach that have traveled a great distance never seem to develop much flavor as they ripen, and often go to mush. This quick dessert can be enjoyed shortly after you make it — no baking or chilling required! Out of season, frozen organic peaches are a good alternative to fresh. Photo by Hannah Kaminsky of Bittersweet. more→
Fresh fruit platters are the best kind of dessert for summer evenings, with berries, melons, and other fruits at their peak. They can also be the main feature of a light brunch served with muffins or other baked goods. Here, quantities are given just as a guideline — they aren’t as important as arrangement—and of course, the fruit should be ripe and luscious. Vary the kind of fruit used according to what’s available. Photo by Hannah Kaminsky of Bittersweet. more→
Summer desserts need not be fancy; in fact, when the short season of summer fruit is upon us, that’s the best dessert of all. These past few summers I’ve enjoyed teaming two or three fruits whose colors and flavors contrast and complement well. Honestly, you don’t need a formal recipe or even quantities, but I give some only as a guideline in the ideas that follow. Once fruit is washed and/or cut up, it should be eaten as soon as possible. You can serve any of these combinations on their own, or over nondairy ice cream or coconut yogurt. Photos by Hannah Kaminsky.
The combination of cucumber, honeydew, and green grapes makes for a simple and refreshing summer salad that’s good as an appetizer as well as a dessert. Or it can be served with a meal, as a counterpoint to something spicy, like a curry. Recipe reprinted with permission from Ripe: A Fresh, Colorful Approach to Fruits and Vegetables* © 2012 by Cheryl Sternman Rule, photography by Paulette Phlipot; Running Press, a member of the Perseus Book Group. more→
The refreshing duo of pineapple and oranges will perk up your taste buds during winter’s long fruit drought. It’s easy enough to make as a snack, and elegant enough to serve as dessert. If you want to end a holiday dinner with a lighter dessert, this is a nice choice. It also makes a fabulous fruity brunch recipe. more→
This vegan parfait recipe is so simple that it’s almost not a recipe at all! Layering nondairy yogurts with seasonal fruits takes almost no effort, creating a treat that looks as appealing as it tastes. It’s a real pleaser, as welcome for breakfast as well as desserts, and a good way to get kids (or the generally finicky) to eat more fruit.
Late-summer fruits can be lush and ripe, but are often past their peak of flavor. I like my midsummer fruit salads plain, but by late summer, fruit salads can use the help of a sauce to enliven the flavors. more→