Does anyone remember those molded jar candles that Bed, Bath and Beyond used to make? The wax would be shaped like fruits that would melt down inside this clear jelly-like substance. The fruit would be suspended in time! I had about three of them - - my favorite being the candy corn version, which I never lit because that sweet smell would make me ill.
This dessert reminds me of those candles.
SUMMER FRUIT TERRINE
Bottle of non-alcoholic Sparkling Cider* (which I found in my market's cheese section)
pint of fresh raspberries
green and red seedless grapes - halved
1 small can of sliced peaches, drained
2 (1/4 oz) envelopes of non-flavored powdered gelatin
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
Arrange fruit in a glass, ceramic of nonstick loaf pan.
Pour 1/4 cup sparkling cider in a small bowl, and sprinkle with gelatin. Let stand 1 minute to soften.
Meanwhile, bring 1 cup of cider to a bowl with sugar, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and add gelatin mixture, also stirring to dissolve completely. Gently stir in 3/4 cup cider and lemon juice, then transfer to a metal bowl set in a larger bowl of ice and cold water to cool. Stir occasionally, until cider is room temperature.
Slowly pour cider over fruit, then chill, covered, until firm - approximately 5-6 hours.
To unmold, dip pan in hot water for 3-5 seconds to loosen and invert onto serving dish.
*For an adult-only audience, substitute the sparkling cider for a Prosecco - an Italian Sparkling Wine.
Much to my dismay, people seemed afraid of this dessert, and I ended up bring over 1/2 of it home...which is a pure shame, since it was really light and tasty. The berries added a sour punch, and the grapes remained firm and sweet. The next time I make it, I will go a little lighter on the fruit so that it is not so dense.
You can also use any fruit you'd like - - but I really like the idea of this dish being an "end of summer" item, with traditional summer fruits. Plus, it looked really pretty. (Although it would've looked even prettier if I had a fluted dish or something to mold it into.)