Thursday, June 14, 2012

In Season: Apricots

Every year, for Christmas, my husband’s brother and sister-in-law give us a Harry and David Fruit of the Month subscription.  We love this!  We love getting fresh, in season fruit every month.  All of a sudden, just on our doorstep.  It’s awesome.

This month it was 16 apricots and a big, beautiful pineapple.  I used the pineapple in my weekly fruit salad and I normally give the apricots away cause I’ve never really liked them, but this year I thought I would try some apricot recipes and give them another shot.  I wanted to do a sweet dish and a savory dish.  I chose this almond apricot tart for the sweet and these pork, apricot and red onion kebabs for the savory.

Almond Apricot Tart

I chose the tart because it looked yummy, but also because I had all of the ingredients already.  And I was a bit curious about the frangipane because my husband and I both love almond paste.  Unfortunately, it was pretty much a bust.  I should have listened to the one review that said the frangipane melted out of the pastry.  I thought maybe that person had just done something wrong since no one else mentioned that, but mine did that too.  And maybe we are doing something wrong, but I’m not sure what that would be.  It could be prevented by putting the tart in a pie or tart pan, but I didn’t like the flavor enough to even try again.  It just wasn’t that exciting.  And we really didn’t like the apricots.  They were bitter and mushy.  In the end, I ate one piece, my husband ate one piece and then I just ate the frangipane off (because that did actually taste yummy) and tossed the rest.  Oh well.

Pork, Apricot, and Red Onion Kebabs (well, stir fry really)

Then I attempted the Pork, Apricot, & Red Onion Kebabs.  This recipe called for 8 apricots and apricot jam.  I had 10 apricots left after the tart, so instead of buying apricot jam, I cooked down the extra 2 apricots and with a little sugar and lemon juice and made my own jam.  I was pretty happy with this.  It was tasty (a good balance of sweet and tart) and perfectly jammy.

I bought skewers just for this recipe and I had fun making my kebabs.  Then I put them on the stovetop grill and they promptly fell apart.  Hmph.  But they were smelling pretty good, so my husband suggested I just slide everything off the skewer and saute it together.  That worked pretty well.  I’m still not really sure how this recipe is supposed to work since the apricots get mushy almost immediately and it takes awhile to cook the pork.  Once I started the saute, I tried to take the apricots off before they got mushy, but I couldn’t do it fast enough.  It ended up being this kind of sweet and savory stir fry.  The apricots became jammy and I basted the pork and onions in more of the apricot jam and everything was slightly sticky and roasted.  This dish is really good - the flavors go really well together.  The saltiness of the pork works so well with the tartness of the apricots and that sweetness of the roasted red onions.  Plus the addition of the jam and the apricots gooeyness make the dish very luscious.  And bonus!  I checked the calorie info on it and it’s very healthy!  It even fits into my weeknight calorie budget, so I had some leftovers this week for dinner.  And I will say, it gets better with age.  The flavors meld together even more and it’s quite delicious.

Pork, Apricot and Onion Nutrition

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