This past weekend’s market trip netted us 7L each of apricots and peaches. Bizjak Farms delivered again, with fragrant, ripe and juicy apricots. As well as eating them fresh out of hand, we turned them into a few apricot desserts this week.
First, we tried them in an ice pop, married with salted caramel. The recipe says not to bother, but I blanched the apricots in boiling water and slipped their skins off. Making the caramel was awkward, as I had forgotten how to do a dry caramel, and ended up with the sugar at the edges of the pan caramelizing before the rest had melted. With a bit of diligent scraping, I ended up with a homogeneous, amber-coloured liquid.
Because the single batch of caramel yields just over half a cup, adding the small amounts of cream and butter did not cause the molten sugar to bubble and boil over. I left the finished salted caramel cool to almost room temperature before pureeing it with the apricots. As for the simple syrup, I debated whether adding more sugar was necessary, but my wife did point out that liquid contributed to the texture. I compromised by using less sugar, but sticking with the specified volume of water.
These ice pops were extremely good: creamy texture, bright tang from the stone fruit, and a subtle sweet-salty finish from the caramel. It was too subtle for me, but I suppose any stronger and it would have overwhelmed the apricot. Highly recommended.