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Apricot-Whiskey Phyllo Baskets

These phyllo cups were inspired by two things. (1) I wanted to make something with phyllo (2) A friend of mine introduced me to a recipe his mum had created for an apricot-whiskey drink.

And then I bought apricots & scotch so I could make a dessert with those flavours! This is also the first recipe on the blog that I completely made up, which is exciting and also means I basically threw things in a pot and have no exact measurements for anything…but there is a recipe! If you make them, let me know how they turn out! It is a very easy recipe.

I made these for my D&D group and they were a great success.

You will need:

Phyllo Pastry

Butter (melted)

Sugar

Lots of apricots

Whiskey

Vanilla (I used my new extract that I brought back from Mexico!)

Dihydrogen Monoxide

First, bake your phyllo cups. Make sure you have everything that you’ll need ready, as it can dry out quite quickly. Begin by getting out a large sheet of parchment or waxed paper (not strictly necessary, but it might stick to your work surface otherwise). Place your first layer of phyllo on it, use a pastry brush to cover it in melted butter (olive oil would also work) and sprinkle sugar on it. Repeat three times so you have four layers.

Cut it into squares that are large enough to fill a muffin tin of your choice, carefully press into muffin tin and bake according to the instructions on the box if using pre-made phyllo, or approximately 15 min at 375 F. The edges should be golden-brown. Let cool.

While the phyllo cups are baking, slice up a bunch of apricots. I didn’t measure this, it may or may not have been 1-2 cups-ish. (It doesn’t really matter, whatever you think will fill however many phyllo cups you made).

Put the apricot slices in a pot and pour in less water than apricots. Maybe 2/3 of the height of your apricots? (remember, it’s easier to add more water, so if you’re unsure, err on the side of less water). Add vanilla extract, sugar & whiskey to taste. If you prefer to retain a stronger alcohol content, add more of the whiskey towards the end of the boiling, and vice versa. I added almost all of mine at the beginning.

Bring to a boil, and then simmer until it looks like it has a fairly thick consistency but the apricot slices haven’t completely disintegrated. Use a slotted spoon to put the apricot filling into a bowl, leaving any extra liquid in the pot.

Add more sugar, whiskey and (if desired) vanilla to the remaining liquid. Simmer on very low heat until is reaches a syrup-y consistency.  You have now made a reduction!

[You can basically do this with anything (ie. port wine, balsamic vinegar), call it  a “_____ reduction” and sound fancy; it’s excellent. Reductions are lovely garnishes as they have quite a concentrated flavour, so a small amount both looks attractive and can offer a nice pop of flavour. I do not recommend sniffing a balsamic vinegar reduction unless you enjoy a slight burning sensation in your nose.]

Your phyllo cups can be served immediately, or refrigerated overnight and served the next day. Either way, don’t fill the phyllo cups until right before serving or they’ll fall apart. I recommend serving the apricot filling warm.

To assemble: Pour apricot filling into phyllo cups, add a scoop of vanilla ice cream, & drizzle with apricot syrup reduction. Eat before it melts into a puddle.

An excellent thing about this recipe is that it is almost impossible to screw up. Extra phyllo cups? Fill them with something else and it will be delicious. Extra filling or syrup? Pour onto pretty much any breakfast food or dessert? I’m sure you can think of something. The proportions of the filling are also pretty flexible, as long as you have significantly more fruit than anything else and remember it’s easier to add than take away.

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