- 3 green cardamom pods
- 1 apple, peeled and roughly chopped
- ⅔ cup (120 g) pitted dried dates, roughly chopped
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 cup (250 g) ricotta
- crudités such as wedges of red and green–skinned apples, carrot, celery and cucumber sticks, wedges of pineapple, seedless grapes and slices of carambola
- Lightly crush the cardamom pods with the flat side of a chef’s knife to split them open, then remove the seeds.
- Discard the pods and crush the seeds with the side of the knife.
- (This can be done with a pestle and mortar.
- )Put the apple, dates, crushed cardamom seeds and cinnamon in a saucepan with 200 ml water.
- Bring to the boil over a moderate heat, stirring occasionally.
- Turn down the heat and simmer for 10 minutes, or until the apples are cooked and the dates are pulpy.
- Stir the mixture occasionally during cooking.
- Remove from the heat and leave to cool.
- When the apple mixture is cold, beat in the ricotta.
- Keep, covered, in the fridge until needed.
- (The dip will keep for 3–4 days.
- )Serve in a shallow bowl or dish surrounded by an assortment of fruit and vegetable crudités, or serve it with freshly baked scones or toast.
Preparation: 10 minutes, plus cooling
Cooking: about 15 minutes