BBQs are the epitome of summer, but desserts on the bbq are highly neglected, and should be brought back into fashion. I love grilling fruit on the bbq- watermelon and peach work particularly well in salads, and pineapples and bananas for desserts. This is a recipe I created, as it makes for a fruity, tropical, summer dessert, but not lacking in flavour or texture. It is perfect for this gorgeous weather at the moment and is something a little different.
Ingredients: (serves 3)
- 1 whole pineapple
- 20 whole cardamom pods
- 2 tbsp vanilla extract (you can also use fresh vanilla pods)
- 1 tbsp maple syrup, plus a bit for drizzling
- 2 tbsp rum (I used Mount Gay rum, but you can use any dark rum- Captain Morgan spice works well. If you do not drink alcohol/ for children, just replace this with some pineapple juice)
- 10 mint leaves, finely chopped, plus some sprigs for decoration
- Coconut sorbet or ice cream (can use vegan ice cream, if vegan)
- Desiccated coconut, for decoration
- Cinnamon powder, for decoration
- Cut the pineapple by chopping off the top and prickly sides. Then you want to remove the flesh from the inedible core, so use a sharp knife to slice off the sides. Cut these sides further into strips. I cut 6 chunky strips, which left me with some pineapple to spare.
- Make the ‘marinade’ by putting the cardamom pods in a pestle and mortar (if you have one). If not, then just use the back of a spoon or the flat surface of a large knife to crush the pods. Once they have been crushed, remove the outer shells and you will be left with small bits of the inner seed.
- Mix the crushed cardamom seeds with the vanilla extract, maple syrup and rum (if using). Stir well.
- Put the pineapple strips into a dish and cover with the marinade. Sprinkle with the chopped mint leaves. Leave this to soak up the juices for 30 minutes at least, but a few hours is preferable.
- Then, heat your bbq (or griddle pan). Chargrill the pineapple slices until you see those distinctive bbq lines on every side of the pineapple. There is no set time for this, it should take around 10 minutes.
- If you are feeling brave, around halfway through the cooking, you can flambé the pineapple. This is a french word for when alcohol is carefully thrown over the food to cause a burst of flames, which adds flavour to the dish. If you want to do this, be very careful. Get a little bit of the rum and pour it into a cup. Pour this over the pineapple, from a distance, remembering that the flame rises extremely quickly after it comes into contact with the alcohol. You can also achieve this effect with a blow torch, if you have one.
- To check it is done, get a knife and cut into the pineapple. It should cut through smoothly enough to be able to eat.
- Lay the pineapple on a plate, and sprinkle with the desiccated coconut, cinnamon powder and maple syrup.
- Add a spoonful of coconut sorbet and garnish with a mint sprig. Serve with your choosing, but I served this with a shot of baileys over ice. Enjoy!