Sunday, August 18, 2013


I picked up some of these delicious strawberries at the farmer's market yesterday. Raise your hand if you agree that berries are the best produce you can find at a farmer's market. Better than the tomatoes, the peppers...maybe even better than the guy with all the cheeses.

No, that's crazy talk.

But the berries aren't to be missed when in prime time. So I chopped a few up for a quick, easy dessert.

Fools are so easy, you should make one now. You need three things: pureed fruit, sugar, and whipped cream. Here's a solid recipe I used from Bon Appetit:


2 cups chopped, hulled fresh strawberries (about 8 oz.) plus 6 whole berries for garnish
1 tablespoon sugar
2 cups chilled heavy whipping cream
Seeds scraped from 1/2 vanilla bean or 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
3/4 cup homemade Strawberry Conserve (recipe below -- if using store-bought, use 1/2 cup, stirred to loosen)
3 crisp ladyfingers (savoiardi, Boudoirs, or Champagne biscuits), crushed (Crisp ladyfingers can be found at better supermarkets and at specialty foods stores and Italian markets.)
Place chopped strawberries in a small bowl. Sprinkle sugar over; let sit, tossing occasionally, until juices are released and sugar is dissolved, about 20 minutes.
Beat cream and vanilla seeds in a large bowl until soft peaks form. Add conserve; fold to blend. Add berries with juices; fold almost to blend. Divide among bowls. Sprinkle crushed ladyfingers over. Garnish with whole berries.

Strawberry Conserve
Makes about 2 cups

4 cups fresh strawberries (about 1 pound), hulled, halved
3/4 cup superfine sugar
Peel (with white pith) of 1/2 lemon

Combine all ingredients in a heavy, wide pot. Cover; let sit at room temperature, stirring occasionally, for 2 hours. (The berries will ooze and sugar will dissolve.)

Bring strawberry mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Cook, stirring gently, until strawberries are just tender, about 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer strawberries to 1 pint jar. Continue simmering liquid until it thickens into a syrupy consistency, 1-2 minutes. Discard lemon peel and pour syrup over strawberries; seal and let cool to room temperature. Chill for up to 1 month.

I don't think I took a photo of the finished product. I probably ate it all before I could get to that part.

And on a side note...if you're ever making a dessert that calls for whipped cream or would be exponentially better with whipped cream on top, please, for the love of god, make your own whipped cream. It takes 2 cups of heavy cream, 2 T of sugar, and like 7 minutes of your time. Store-bought whipped cream is a fallacy.


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