Fresh Fruit in Vanilla-infused Balsamic Vinegar
A Hawaiian twist on the Italian dessert of simple fresh fruit with balsamic vinegar: Here the vinegar is infused with vanilla and fresh fig, served with tropical fruit. Any variety of fresh fruit may be used; selected whatever is at peak in your market. The vinegar may be infused with vanilla alone if you wish.
- Vanilla-infused Balsamic Vinegar
- Balsamic Vinegar - 1 cup
- Vanilla bean - 1, split lengthwise
- Ripe Fig - 1, chopped
- Ripe Papaya - 1, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
- Ripe Figs - 4 to 5, cut into pieces
- Fresh strawberries - 3 cups, hulled and halved
- Fresh Raspberries - 1 cup
- Sugar - 1/4 cup
- Fresh strawberries - 4, sliced and fanned
- Fresh mint sprigs - 4
To make the vinegar: In a medium non-aluminum saucepan or skillet, heat the vinegar over medium-high heat until nearly boiling. Add the vanilla bean, reduce heat to low, and simmer 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the fig. Let stand for at least 4 hours, or overnight, at room temperature to infuse. Cover and refrigerate.
To serve: Strain the vinegar. In a large bowl, toss the papaya, figs, and berries with the sugar and vinegar. Divide among 4 compote glasses and garnish with strawberry fans and mint.