Date and orange salad with halva and pistachio yoghurt

AT A GLANCE

  • Serves 6 people

  • 280 gm (1 cup) Greek-style yoghurt
  • 50 gm brown sugar
  • 220 gm (1 cup) caster sugar
  • 1 cinnamon quill
  • 2 pieces each lemon and orange peel, removed with a peeler
  • 1 tsp rosewater
  • 4 oranges, thinly sliced
  • 8 medjool dates, pitted
  • 45 gm (1/3 cup) pistachio kernels
  • 50 gm pistachio halva, shaved (see note)
01   Line a small sieve with muslin and place over a bowl. Spoon one quarter of the yoghurt into the muslin-lined sieve, scatter with a quarter of the brown sugar, and repeat with remaining yoghurt and sugar. Gather edges of muslin, secure with kitchen string and refrigerate overnight to drain.
02   Meanwhile, combine caster sugar, cinnamon, citrus peel and 125ml water in a small saucepan over medium heat, stir to dissolve sugar then simmer until syrupy (7-10 minutes). Cool slightly, add rosewater, then cool completely. Place dates and oranges in a single layer in a non-reactive dish, pour over syrup and refrigerate for flavours to develop (6 hours-overnight).
03   Preheat oven to 180C. Place pistachios on a baking tray and roast, shaking occasionally, until light golden (3-5 minutes). Cool, coarsely crush in a mortar and pestle (reserve a few whole to serve), and scatter over a baking tray. Roll tablespoonfuls of drained yoghurt in crushed pistachio, set aside, and repeat with remaining yoghurt. Arrange orange slices and dates on a serving platter, top with pistachio yoghurt, scatter with shaved halva and reserved pistachios and serve.
Note Pistachio halva is available from Greek delicatessens; contact Global Foods Group for details.

This recipe is from the March 2010 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.
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