Monday, June 23, 2014

Grilled Pineapple with Coconut Basil Dust

During the summer months, I like to eat lighter.  The days are longer and hotter, fresh fruits and vegetables are in season, and I have more time to cook.  Occasionally, at the end of a light meal,  I like to have something sweet and refreshing.  I'm not really a baker, though, and I also want to keep my desserts fresh and light.  The best way to do that is by incorporating fruit into dessert.  By grilling the pineapple on the barbecue, the sweetness intensifies, and there is an added dimension of smokiness.  The pairing of pineapple and coconut is classic, but the addition of basil is unexpected yet complimentary.  You can serve just the pineapple and basil dust for a really light final course, or add a scoop of Coconut Bliss dairy-free ice cream as I have done.  

Serves 2 - 4



2 Tbsp shredded, unsweetened coconut
2 Tbsp fresh basil
1 Tbsp coconut sugar
zest of one lime


1. Toast shredded coconut in a dry pan over medium heat on the stove until it just starts to turn colour but is not brown.  Remove and cool.

2. Slice and core pineapple.  Grill for approximately 3 - 4 minutes per side over medium heat.  Pineapple will have grill marks and be tender throughout.

3. In a food processor, combine coconut, basil, sugar, and lime zest.  Pulse until well combined.

4. On a serving plate, place the ice cream if using, grilled pineapple, and top with basil dust.  Serve immediately and enjoy!

 Shopping Tips

1. When choosing a pineapple, check to make sure that the leaves are green and healthy.  The one in the picture above is not ripe because the body is still very green and firm.  When ripe, the bottom of the pineapple will start to turn yellow and it will smell pineapple-y and be slightly tender.  Once it starts to smell sweet, it is probably overripe.  Cut pineapple will keep in the refrigerator for several days and become sweeter as it sits, so it is better to cut it earlier than later.  Also, grilling the pineapple will intensify the sweetness.  It is better to grill slightly firm pineapple rather than pieces that are falling apart.

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