Summer berry salad with ginger, lime & labneh

Summer berry salad with ginger, lime & labneh

By
From
New Feast
Serves
4
Photographer
Alan Benson

A lovely summer breakfast fruit salad using perfectly ripe berries in a light delicately perfumed syrup. Use any combination of soft berries that you like; stone fruits, such as nectarines or white peaches are also delicious.

The quantities given for the syrup and labneh will make more than you need. However they can both be made ahead of time and will keep well in the fridge for up to 24 hours. You can also fancy-up the labneh by beating in 2 tablespoons of honey, a capful of orange flower water and the lightly crushed seeds from 4 cardamom pods before draining. Serve with fresh berries, use to fill the Pavlova ‘Flowers’ or serve as accompaniment to all kinds of syrupy cakes or puddings instead of cream. It would be delicious with Orange Baklava Cigars, Spiced Currant Sfiha or the Blackberry-Sour Cream Crumble Cake.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
450g summer berries
1/3 cup finely shredded baby mint leaves
sprigs elderflower, (optional)

Ginger-lime syrup

Quantity Ingredient
150g caster sugar
150ml water
4 cardamom pods, crushed
4 thin slices fresh ginger
strip peel and juice from 1 lime

Vanilla labneh

Quantity Ingredient
1 tablespoon honey or maple syrup
1 vanilla pod, split and seeds scraped
500g natural yoghurt

Method

  1. To make the ginger-lime syrup, put the sugar, water, cardamom pods, ginger and lime peel in a small saucepan. Bring to the boil, then simmer gently for about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat. When cool, add the lime juice then chill the syrup until ready to use. Strain and remove the aromatics just before serving.
  2. For the soft-strained vanilla labneh, mix the honey and vanilla seeds into the yoghurt and scrape into a clean tea towel (a muslin square or new J-cloth will also do nicely). Tie the four corners together to form a hanging bag. Twist firmly to give it a good squeeze and kick-start the draining process. Suspend the bag from a wooden spoon set over a deep bowl and allow it to drain in the fridge for at least 4 hours or, preferably, overnight. The longer you hang it, the thicker it will be, but you can always thin it to a looser consistency, if necessary, with a little fresh yoghurt or cream.
  3. Combine all the fruit in a mixing bowl with the mint and elderflower sprigs, if using, and pour on the chilled syrup. Toss gently, then divide between four serving bowls and serve with the labneh.
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