Winter Fresh Fruit Compote with Reduced-cal Vanilla Sauce


4 to 6 servings

3 to 4 clementines, peeled and separated into sections, any seeds removed

1 firm ripe pomegranate, seeds removed and reserved, peel and white flesh discarded (optional)

1 cup sliced firm ripe strawberries (optional0

½ to 1 cup firm ripe blueberries or red raspberries, or a combination, stems removed (optional)

½ to 1 cup firm ripe pear cubes, peeled or unpeeled as desired

½ to 1 cup green or red seedless grapes

½ to 1 cup peeled apple cubes, peeled or unpeeled as desired

½ to 1 cup cubed peeled cantaloupe

Few drops balsamic vinegar (optional)

Sugar or granulated sugar substitute to taste (optional)

1 firm ripe medium banana, peeled and thinly sliced

Reduced-Cal Vanilla Sauce as desired (optional) and sprigs of fresh mint for garnish

Prepare all fruits, except banana.  Combine all fruits; add balsamic vinegar and sugar or granulated sugar substitute to taste, if desired.  Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour to marinate fruit.  Add banana just before serving. Spoon mixed fruit into dessert dishes and garnish each serving with a spoonful of Reduced-Cal Vanilla Sauce and a sprig of fresh mint.

Variation: Omit Reduced-Cal Vanilla Sauce and balsamic vinegar; add ½ cup brandy or almond or

                   orange liqueur, or orange juice to fruit compote with sugar or granulated sugar substitute.

                   Garnish with sprigs of fresh mint.

Reduced-Cal Vanilla Sauce

about 2 cups

1½ cups reduced-fat or skim milk

2 eggs or 4 egg whites, or the equivalent in egg substitute of 2 eggs, IE Egg Beaters,

  at room temperature

¼ cup sugar or the equivalent of 1/4 cup sugar in granulated sugar substitute

Pinch of salt

1 to 2 teaspoon(s) vanilla extract

Scald milk in the top of a double boiler over low heat (about 200 degrees F.).  In a small bowl, combine eggs, sugar, and salt, mixing well.  Gradually stir in scalded milk.  Transfer mixture to the top of the double boiler; cook over simmering, not boiling, water (about 200 degrees F.), stirring constantly.  When custard will coat a metal spoon, remove from heat.  Place pan in cold water to cool quickly.  If custard starts to curdle, beat vigorously with a hand-rotary beater until smooth.  Add vanilla, blending well.  Cool. Serve at room temperature or chilled.  Store in an airtight glass jar in the refrigerator.

Variation: Omit vanilla; add a pinch of nutmeg or saffron to sauce.

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