I've settled on a Mediterranean menu for our Independence Day feast. We'll have spiced lamb skewers (now there's the flex in flegan!), grilled rosemary flatbreads, grilled vegetables with feta, melon kebabs with honey-lime drizzle and mint, and these stuffed fruit skewers.
I doubt there's anything genuinely Mediterranean about this rich, but not overly sweet, dessert. However, it offers a bit more nutrition than your average slice of devil's food, despite its use of cream cheese. (I don't believe in that 3-a-day nonsense. A little research reveals that dairy is decidedly unhealthful.) Anyway, the skewers will suit the general theme of the meal.
I used almonds in the apricots and walnuts in the dates, but you could speed preparation by mixing the all nuts into the cream cheese before stuffing the fruit. I'll use toothpicks as miniature skewers to combine one stuffed date and one stuffed apricot for each serving... Well, okay, I made enough for three mini-skewers per person. So sue me.
Stuffed Date and Apricot Skewers
18 whole, dried apricots
18 whole, dried dates
3 oz cream cheese
1 Tbs fresh orange zest
1/8 cup chopped almonds, raw and unsalted
1/8 cup chopped walnuts, raw and unsalted
Carefully split dried fruits so they can be stuffed, but are not completely halved; set aside. Soften cream cheese in microwave for 30 seconds. Add orange zest and stir to combine. Stuff each fruit with a pinch of chopped nuts and approximately 1/2 teaspoon cream cheese mixture. Skewer two fruits on each of 18 toothpicks. Chill before serving. Makes 18 mini-skewers.