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Recipe File - Raspberries with red pepper and grains of paradise

A perfect confection guaranteed to jazz up any scoop of ice cream

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 pint large raspberries

filling:

  • 2 medium red bell peppers (to produce 5 ounces of juice)
  • 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon agar-agar powder (at health food stores; can substitute 1 teaspoon powdered gelatin)
  • a pinch of salt

syrup:

  • 1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 3 ounces water
  • 1 teaspoon coarsely ground grains of paradise (at Middle Eastern markets; can substitute black pepper)
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup

METHOD

  1. Wash the raspberries; dry on paper towels.
  2. Put cleaned and gutted red peppers through a juicer, or rough chop and put into a food processor. Blend to a purée and strain.
  3. In a small saucepan, combine the juice, sugar, salt, and the agar-agar and bring to a boil. (If using gelatin, bring the juice to a boil; combine sugar, salt, and gelatin in a small bowl and add the juice; stir until gelatin is completely dissolved.) Transfer to a small bowl and let cool to room temperature.
  4. Line a tray with a sheet of bubble wrap and prop the berries, hollow side up, between the bubbles.
  5. Use a small spoon to fill the cavity of each berry with the juice mixture (you will have extra). Refrigerate until set (at least 30 minutes).
  6. Combine the sugar, water, grains of paradise (or black pepper), and corn syrup in a small saucepan; bring to a simmer. Once the sugar has dissolved, transfer the mixture to a small bowl and let cool to room temperature.
  7. When ready to serve, toss each raspberry in a few drops of the syrup to coat evenly.

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