After my excursion into cheese making with the Greek yogurt Total sent me last week (click here), I wanted to do something sweet and dessert-like. My daughter Nicola told me she likes to mix blueberries into the yogurt and drizzle it with honey. I decided to take this a step further and cook the blueberries in a little honey first, making a rough compote.
It was very easy: I just tipped a pack of blueberries into a pan and drizzled over some runny honey. I put the smallest dash of water in to help stop it all from sticking to the pan while I gently heated the fruit and honey, stirring frequently, until some of the blueberries started popping apart and the juices flowed into the now melted honey and there was a nice fruity syrup at the bottom. I removed from the heat and transferred to a bowl. I didn’t want to cook them too much; just enough to melt into a kind of compote but most of the blueberries stay whole.
Once the compote was cold, I spooned some over some yogurt and then stirred it in carefully, so it was more of a ripple of blueberries than fully mixed in. It was really good.
I very rarely buy flavoured yogurts but mixing in your own flavourings like honey, maple syrup, homemade fruit compote, or perhaps some chopped nuts and dried fruit, is a great thing to do. In this case I knew the compote was free of extra additives and just fresh blueberries and honey.
My other idea was to make a yogurt brûlée. Creme brûlée is generally made with a custard base, made from eggs, sugar and milk or cream. Then one either makes a caramel and pours that over the top, or you sprinkle the top of the cream with sugar and then put it under a hot grill to caramelise or use a kitchen blow torch. I thought I’d see how it turned out using yogurt instead of custard. First of all I lined the bottom of an individual, ovenproof dish with some of the blueberry compote. Then I covered this with a thick coating of Greek yogurt over which I sprinkled a couple of level teaspoons of sugar.
I do have a blow torch but it’s so long since I’ve used it – years and years – that it had no gas. So I heated the grill and once it was hot, put the dish underneath to melt and caramelise the sugar. Then put it in a fridge to cool.
I have to confess that it wasn’t a very good caramel. I actually tried twice and the second time wasn’t much better. Maybe I needed more sugar but I don’t like to eat too much. However, the second attempt did give me a bit of caramel that cracked when I struck it with a teaspoon. Using a grill, the yogurt does get cooked a little and has a slightly curd-cheesey texture, but I liked it.
When I struck through the caramel and lifted a spoonful of the slightly cooked yogurt with some of the gorgeous, tangy blueberry compote, it all tasted fabulous together. It would be a great dessert for entertaining. Yes, maybe I need to practise the caramel but it was still delicious. And you can make it ahead of time and keep in the fridge until needed. Always a bonus when entertaining!