Roast Your Fruit to Unlock New Flavors: 7 Recipes You Need to Have

“It may seem greedy to improve on nature … but that is exactly what roasting does,” celebrity chef Tom Colicchio told The New York Times. It’s true: The roasting process is a natural enhancement to the sweet, rich flavors of all your favorite fruits. Intensify these tastes by removing excess moisture from your fruits, leaving behind a richly textured dish base with a lovely, concentrated taste.

Best of all, these flavorful fruits make for versatile dishes. Try them in everything from breakfast to dinner to dessert — roasted fruits can act as complements to an entrée or on their own as featured players. Fire up your oven and try these 7 delicious roasted fruit recipes!

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1. Breakfast Quinoa with Cinnamon-Roasted Fruit

Quinoa is a healthful, fiber- and protein-rich grain that has been grown for human consumption since around 3,000 to 4,000 years ago, according to the University of Chicago’s Department of Anthropology. Try starting your day off the right way with this wholesome breakfast quinoa from the Curvy Carrot. The dish incorporates cinnamon and roasted fruits for an enriched overall character. This recipe can also easily be converted into a vegan-friendly meal by substituting coconut or almond milk for regular skim. The recipe takes 30 minutes to complete and makes 2 servings.

Ingredients:

Quinoa

  • 2 cups skim milk (or vegan alternative)
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 cup quinoa, rinsed

Fruit

  • 3 to 4 large figs, sliced
  • ½ cup blueberries
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons agave or honey
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon

Directions: For the roasted fruit – Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. In a medium bowl, combine the agave (or honey) with the cinnamon, mixing well. Add the figs and blueberries to the bowl, and toss gently to thoroughly coat. Arrange the fruit on a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake the fruit until the juices bubble, about 10 minutes or so. Remove from the oven and cool slightly.

For the quinoa – In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the milk and the cinnamon stick, and bring the mixture to a boil. Add the quinoa, mixing well, and bring the mixture back to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered, until almost all of the milk has been absorbed, about 15 minutes or so.

At this point, if you feel there is still too much milk, you can continue to simmer the mixture until the milk has been absorbed to your taste. Remove the cinnamon stick from the quinoa and place into serving bowls. Top with the roasted fruit and additional agave (or honey) as desired.

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2. Arugula and Roasted Fruit Salad with Panettone Croutons

Next up, Food Network offers this salad recipe from Giada de Laurentiis. The dish achieves its sharp, distinct flavor through roasting plums, pears, and other fruits. Indulge your sweet tooth the healthy way with this light, refreshing dish — it makes a perfect starter for any gathering or dinner party. The recipe takes an hour and 15 minutes to complete and yields 6 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups 1-inch cubes panettone (about 6 ounces)
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries (thawed, if frozen)
  • 1 cup red seedless grapes
  • 2 pears, cut into eighths and cored
  • 2 plums, cut into eighths and pitted
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice, plus ¼ cup (about 2 lemons total), plus ½ lemon, zested
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • ¼ cup orange blossom honey
  • ¼ cup canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 6 ounces arugula greens

Directions: Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the panettone cubes on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until dark golden brown and crispy on the outside, about 45 to 50 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside. The croutons will continue to crisp as they cool.

Increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the fruit in a large mixing bowl and drizzle with melted butter, 2 tablespoons lemon juice, and the sugar. Toss to coat and spread the fruit out in a single layer onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until the pears are tender and the fruit is beginning to brown on the edges, about 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Meanwhile, place the honey, remaining ¼ cup lemon juice, canola oil, cream, lemon zest, 1 teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper in a blender. Run the machine until the ingredients are well-blended. Set aside.

To assemble the salad, place the arugula greens, roasted fruit, and panettone croutons in a large bowl. Add the salad dressing and the remaining ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Toss to coat and serve immediately.

Source: iStock

3. Roasted Duck with Roasted Fruit Compote

According to Dr. William F. Dean of the Cornell College of Veterinary Medicine, domestication of ducks for the purposes of eating can be traced back about 4,000 years to the Asian continent. This recipe’s spiced duck is elegantly accompanied by a rich, roasted fruit compote and fresh rosemary. Cooking Light’s succulent duck and flavorful fruit compote are a match made in heaven — try serving alongside a light salad, and enjoy! The recipe yields 4 servings and takes 2 hours and 40 minutes to complete.

Ingredients:

Duck

  • 1 (4-pound) frozen dressed domestic duck, thawed
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground white pepper, divided
  • ½ cup coarsely chopped celery
  • ½ cup coarsely chopped carrot
  • 1 small onion, quartered
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 orange, halved and seeded
  • ⅔ cup dry red wine

Compote

  • 1 cup pitted cherries
  • 1½ teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 peach, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 Bartlett or Anjou pears, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 Golden Delicious apples, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 tablespoons dry white wine

Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

To prepare duck – Rinse duck under cold water; pat dry. Sprinkle ¼ teaspoon salt and ⅛ teaspoon pepper in body cavity. Place celery, carrot, onion, and garlic in cavity; tie ends of legs together with string. Lift wing tips up and over back; tuck under duck. Place duck on the rack of a broiler pan or roasting pan coated with cooking spray. Place rack in pan.

Rub cut sides of orange halves over duck; pierce skin over breast several times with a fork. Bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 1 hour and 45 minutes or until a thermometer registers 180 degrees Fahrenheit, basting every 30 minutes with red wine. Let stand 10 minutes. Discard skin; sprinkle duck with the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt and ⅛ teaspoon pepper. Cover; keep warm. Drain pan drippings.

To prepare compote – Increase oven temperature to 475 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine cherries and next four ingredients (through apple) in bottom of roasting pan coated with cooking spray, tossing gently. Bake at 475 degrees Fahrenheit for 25 minutes or until very tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in 2 tablespoons white wine; bake an additional 5 minutes. Serve with duck.

Source: iStock

4. Roasted Strawberry, Brie, and Chocolate Grilled Cheese

According to iGourmet’s Encyclopedia of Cheese, brie cheese was once a requisite offering for loyal French subjects to pay to their kings. If this cheese was good enough for royalty, then it’s certainly good enough for us. With it, How Sweet Eats offers a simple yet sophisticated solution for tonight’s dessert: Top off a thick slice of crusty multigrain bread with gooey, melted brie, flavorful roasted strawberries, and antioxidant-packed dark chocolate for an irresistible combination of diverse flavors. Cook up that sandwich to a light crisp, and you’re ready to indulge! The recipe makes 2 sandwiches and takes 30 minutes to complete.

Ingredients:

  • 6 strawberries, quartered
  • ½ teaspoon canola oil
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 4 thick-cut slices of multigrain bread
  • 2 to 3 ounces of brie cheese, sliced
  • 1 to 2 ounces high-quality chocolate

Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Toss strawberries with oil and salt, then spread on a baking sheet and roast for 20 minutes.

Heat a large skillet or grill over medium-low heat. Butter the sides of two slices of bread, place them on the skillet buttered-side down, then layer on a few slices of cheese, chocolate, and strawberries. Top with a few more slices of cheese, then butter one side of the other bread slices, and place on top of the cheese. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the cheese has started to melt, then gently flip the sandwich and cook until golden. Serve immediately!

Source: iStock

5. Roasted Pears With Coffee Mascarpone Cream

Pears are a wonderful ingredient to use in autumn. Roasting will not only bring out the best of this fruit’s marvelous flavors, but it will also help remove the pesky effects of over-ripening. Creamy, light mascarpone cheese pairs nicely with the full-bodied taste of coffee beans to subtly accent the pear’s natural richness. This recipe from Sweet Paul Magazine takes about 40 minutes to make and yields 6 servings.

Ingredients:

Roasted pears

  • ¼ cup light brown sugar
  • ½ vanilla bean
  • 3 pears, peeled, halved lengthwise, and cored
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Coffee mascarpone cream

  • 4 teaspoons freshly ground coffee
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 cup chilled heavy cream
  • ½ cup mascarpone cheese
  • ½ cup confectioners’ sugar
  • ½ vanilla bean
  • Roasted coffee beans

Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. In a small bowl, combine sugar and scraped vanilla bean seeds.

Put the pears in a large baking dish, cut side up. Pour lemon juice over the pears and sprinkle with sugar. Pour the water into the dish, and add a small pat of butter to each pear. Roast for 30 minutes, basting every 10 minutes. Turn the pears over and roast for another 30 minutes.

For the cream, stir coffee and hot water in a large bowl until aromatic. Add cream, marscapone, sugar, and scraped vanilla bean seeds. Beat until the cream is thick and smooth, without over-beating.

Arrange the pears on a platter, cut side up. Dollop the cream into the cavity of each pear and decorate with roasted coffee beans.

Source: iStock

6. Roasted Peach Parfait

The beauty of a parfait is that its sweet flavors can be enjoyed for both breakfast and dessert. A yogurt base balances the sweet natural flavors of soft, roasted peaches. This is all topped with a pistachio crumble, sweetened with brown sugar, and given a hearty, fiber-rich profile with the addition of oats. Add A Pinch’s recipe takes 25 minutes to make and yields 6 to 8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 6 peaches, halved
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 cups Greek yogurt
  • Honey

Pistachio crumble topping

  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup brown sugar, packed
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • ½ cup quick-cooking oats
  • ½ cup chopped pistachios
  • Pinch of salt

Directions: To make roasted peaches – Preheat oven to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. Place peach halves onto a kitchen sheet pan with skin side down. Sprinkle each half of peach with brown sugar. Roast until peach halves have browned, about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly.

To make crumble topping – Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Cut butter into flour and brown sugar with a pastry blender or two forks in a medium bowl. Stir in oats, pistachios, and salt. Spread onto a small kitchen sheet pan and toast for about 10 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

To assemble – Place one roasted peach half in the bottom of a parfait dish or glass. Top with about ¼ cup Greek yogurt. Drizzle with honey and sprinkle crumble topping on top.

Source: iStock

7. Roasted Fruit and Brioche Bread Pudding

Chef Tom Colicchio introduces roasted fruits into this classic bread pudding. In addition, he adds level of sophistication to the dish through the use of soft brioche rolls, all soaked to a deep richness in a simple custard base. Baking this pudding in a water bath prevents it from getting too soggy, instead allowing it to retain a delicate, moist texture. Try serving it with ice cream for an added burst of flavor. This recipe, via The New York Times, takes an hour to make and yields 8 servings.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 8 roasted peach, nectarine, or Pluot halves, or 16 roasted apricot or plum halves, caramel sauce reserved
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1½ cups heavy cream
  • 1½ cups whole milk
  • 1 vanilla bean, split
  • 5 cups crustless brioche, in small cubes

Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly butter 8 (1-cup) ovenproof ramekins and dust with a little sugar.

Place 5 tablespoons sugar in a small nonstick skillet. Drizzle with syrup. Cook over medium heat, stirring, until mixture liquefies. Continue cooking until mixture turns into caramel. Pour caramel into ramekins to coat bottoms. Cut roasted fruit in thick slices, and arrange in bottoms of ramekins.

Whisk eggs, egg yolk, and remaining sugar in a large bowl. Place cream and milk in a saucepan with vanilla bean, and heat until beginning to bubble around edges. Do not allow to boil. Slowly whisk hot liquid into egg mixture. Add brioche cubes, lightly pressing with back of spoon so they become saturated. Remove vanilla bean. Spoon the soaked brioche into ramekins.

Place ramekins in a large baking pan. Add hot water until it comes halfway up sides. Place in oven and bake until tops of puddings are lightly browned and crusty, about 40 minutes.

Run a sharp knife around edges and un-mold puddings onto individual plates. Gently reheat caramel sauce reserved from roasted fruit, whisking, until just warm. Pour around puddings and serve.

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