I freely admit I am in a serious love affair with summer stone fruit. No other fruits stand a fighting chance when plums and peaches are in season. One of my all-time favorites is the Flavor King Pluot–a delicious marriage of kissing cousins plum and apricot that produces a rich, flavorful cross marked by floral notes of hibiscus. You’ll likely find them in the market stalls of smaller independent growers at your local farmers market. Look for medium-sized fruit with deep purple-red flesh, and a heady fragrance that gives away the sweet, spicy flesh within.
They are absolutely swoon-worthy marinated in homemade Rosemary-Lavender Simple Syrup and oven roasted to intensify their natural sweetness. The combination of lively rosemary and mellow lavender adds incredible dimension to this easy, elegant dessert.
I generally serve roasted pluots with a generous scoop of fresh ricotta cheese (try Bellwether Farms Whole Milk Basket Ricotta) drizzled with additional simple syrup and pan juices. Vanilla bean ice cream is a solid choice as well. Either way, summer never tasted so good!
OVEN ROASTED PLUOTS with Rosemary-Lavender Syrup (serves 8)
For the Rosemary-Lavender Simple Syrup:
- 2 cups water
- 2 cups organic sugar
- 4 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 1/2 teaspoon culinary lavender
- 8 ripe Flavor King pluots (or other variety plum/pluot)
- 24 ounces (two 12 ounce cartons) fresh whole milk ricotta cheese
- fresh mint for garnish (if desired)
To make the simple syrup:
- Bring the water to a boil in a saucepan. Add the sugar and stir to dissolve.
- Add rosemary sprigs and lavendar. Return to a boil for (1) minute.
- Remove pan from the heat and allow the herbs to steep for 45 minutes.
- Pour the cooled syrup through a fine mesh strainer to remove the solids. Store in a glass container. *Should be refrigerated after use.
To roast the pluots:
- Preheat oven to 400F. Wash and dry the fruit. Cut pluots in half and remove the pit.
- Place halved pluots in a large mixing bowl, and gently toss with 1/3 cup of the Rosemary-Lavender syrup to coat. Let them marinate for at least 20 minutes.
- Place the plums cut side up on a parchment-lined baking sheet.
- Roast 15-20 minutes (check them at 15 minutes) until they are soft but still hold their shape (test with a fork).
- Remove from the oven and let cool completely.
- To serve, place 1 to 2 scoops of ricotta in each serving bowl. Top with (2) plum halves and drizzle with additional Rosemary-Lavender syrup plus pan juices. Garnish with a fresh mint leaf if desired.