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The weather is gorgeous – 70+ and sunny. Love it! It’s the perfect weather to renew good habits. I’ve been taking regular walks outside both to enjoy the weather and to start training for the Susan G Komen 3-Day for the Cure, which I’ll walk later this year. I’m also loving all the fruit that’s starting to appear in the stores and farm stands. I’ve been getting tired of apples and bananas and have been waiting for berries and nectarines.

This is one of my favorite fruit salads – mixed berries topped with just a touch of homemade vanilla syrup. The syrup adds a brightness and uniqueness to the berries and is a great way to dress up a simple fruit salad for a more formal event, such as a wedding or baby.

Mixed Berry Salad with Vanilla Syrup

Adapted from Fine Cooking, June/July 2004

Ingredients:

  • 6-8 c. fresh mixed berries (any type that are in season. I like a combination of strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries)
  • 1/2 vanilla bean
  • 1/4 c. granulated sugar
  • 1/4. c. water

Instructions:

  1. Clean and slice berries and toss in a large bowl. Cover and place in the fridge to keep cold.
  2. Fill a small saucepan with 1/4 c. water and 1/4 c. sugar.
  3. Split vanilla bean lengthwise. Scrape out the seeds from one half of the vanilla bean and place in the saucepan with water and sugar. (Save the vanilla bean pod for a garnish, or place in your jar of vanilla sugar or vanilla extract.)
  4. Over medium heat, bring water and sugar to just boiling. Stir until sugar has dissolved. Lower heat and simmer for 7 minutes, allowing the vanilla to infuse the syrup.
  5. Allow syrup to cool before moving to a refrigerator to chill completely.

Serve: Pour 1-2 Tbs. syrup over fruit & enjoy!

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