Toast with Cardamom Brandied Apricots and Mascarpone


As an attempt to both please the masses and take up a challenge, I’ve started a new series I’m ingeniously calling: Toast Tuesdays. Not my most revolutionary culinary idea, but after some surveys and genuine questions and conversation on Instagram, it would seem as though the people are needing easy recipes. It goes against most of my creative process to create basic (re:bland) food and meals, so I’m asking we meet halfway. I’ll give you one spread, pickle, sauce, or veg, and you can do the rest.



The toast recipes in this series will have suggestions as to what tastes best, but the goal here is to show how cooking great food doesn’t have to be complicated if you’re willing to learn the fundamentals about flavor and texture. There is a serious trend in food blogging and instagram profiles (the new blogs?) where “Everything can be made in 20 minutes or less!” or “always less than 10 ingredients!”, or my personal favorite “super easy ___”. Truthfully, this toast is less than 10 ingredients not counting the bread, and is vastly more flavorful than a quick smoothie or paleo pancake. I promise you that this will not take any time at all, and it will add a significant appreciation for moments in the day where you need a snack or breakfast bite. It’s my hope that through this series and more, you’ll learn some of the vast uses of flavor combinations and discover great food, is in fact, not hard to make. It just takes care.

Food is about more than a series of checks and balances with nutrition and energy levels. Everything from the farmers market to the day I sit down at a table with a finished dish is about savoring moments. I like simple things— walks in the Presidio, coffee in the morning, a great book, doing puzzles with friends over wine—these are the things of life. Little moments adding up to a lifetime of quality time, community and gratitude.

Toast with Cardamom Brandied Apricots and Mascarpone

Brandied Apricots with Cardamom

1 lb fresh apricots, halved and pit removed
1/2 c sugar
1/2 c brandy
1/4 c water
1 tsp vanilla
5-6 cardamom pods (whole, not ground)
1 cinnamon stick

For the Toast

2 pieces GF toast (I used Mariposa)
mascarpone cheese
ground cinamon
toasted hazelnuts, chopped

To make

In a small sauce pan or pot, place the apricots cut side down, stacking on top of each other. Add in sugar, brandy, water, vanilla, and cardamon. Not cinnamon stick. Heat on medium high heat until it just starts to boil (past simmer, but not a rolling boil), let boil for one minute, and then remove from heat.

Using a colander, drain the apricots into a glass or heatproof bowl, saving all the liquid in the bowl. Using a spoon or a fork, carefully remove all the cardamom pods from the apricots and put into the syrup. Pour the liquid syrup back into the pan and bring to a simmer. Continue to cook sauce down until it’s at least 1/3 less volume.

Once it’s cooked down, pour syrup back over apricots and allow to cool.

Pour the apricots and the syrup into a glass storage jar and add a cinnamon stick. They will keep well stored in a fridge for up to a month. (maybe longer!)

To make the toast, simply spread mascarpone cheese, add apricots, a dash of cinnamon, and toasted hazelnuts.