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Wine-Spiked Berries with Ricotta

Servings: Makes 4 servings
Berries are elevated to a heady level in this elegant, and adult-only, dessert that is light and healthy with a touch of richness. You can prepare the red wine syrup and ricotta mixture in advance and assemble the components just before serving.

1 large orange
1 1/2 cups dry red wine
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp. sugar
2 cups mixed raspberries, blueberries and/or blackberries
1 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1 tbsp. Grand Marnier liqueur
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract

Using a sharp paring knife, cut two 2- to 3-inch strips of zest from the orange. Using the fine rasps of a handheld grater or a microplane, remove 1 tsp. finely grated zest from another section of the orange. Reserve the orange for another use.

In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the wine, the 1/2 cup sugar and the orange zest strips and cook, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves, about 3 minutes. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium and simmer until the liquid is reduced by about one-third, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and let the syrup cool.

Put the berries in a bowl. Remove the zest strips from the syrup and pour over the berries.

In a food processor, combine the ricotta, Grand Marnier, vanilla, grated orange zest and the 2 Tbs. sugar and process until smooth. Spoon the berries with some syrup into glasses or small bowls and top with a dollop of the ricotta mixture. Serve immediately.

Makes 4 servings.

Source: Adapted from Williams-Sonoma
Date: March 24, 2014