Monday, June 20, 2011

A Strawberry Weekend Pt. 1

Our baby strawberry plant is just barely beginning to produce fruit, but on our way home from work last week we drove past a guy randomly set up on a street corner near us selling flats of them. Given the cold & grey springtime we've had, we were totally suckered in to buying some.

No, that's not nearly all of them. Just what we had out at the time.

They weren't as fresh as we'd like and not as local either (turned out they were from California), but we were determined to make the best of them now that we had them. As strawberries go they were a bit on the tart side, so eating an entire flat of them raw wasn't going to happen.  Happily, there were a few recipes that we'd been waiting to try. The first was fed to me on twitter via their New York Times food blog: A Strawberry Fool.

Don't let the name deceive you. You'd be an honest fool not to try this. Really, is it possible to go wrong with something as simple as strawberries and whipped cream? In the end, that's all the recipe really is. Homemade whipped cream is totally where it's at, and I do believe that this recipe gets it right in creating the puree to avoid the separation of the juices (I've made enough Thanksgiving fruit salads to be aware of this malady first-hand).

We halved the recipe since there were only 2 of us to feed and probably used a couple more strawberries than necessary (we do have quite a few to get through...) but it was a perfect light and summery dessert. It even has me re-thinking if we should bother making other recipes with the rest.

For those who would rather not waste the extra click to get to the NY Times, here is the recipe, adapted from Mark Bittman's adaptation of the original. (Someday in the future, we will have proof that he's not the only person from whom we get recipes. I promise).

Strawberry Fool
(Serves 2)
  • 1/2 pint strawberries
  • 1/4 cup sugar, or to taste
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract, optional
  • 1. Hull strawberries, then wash them and chop into 1/4-inch-thick pieces. Toss with half the sugar, and wait 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they give up their juices.
  • 2. Place half the strawberries and all the juice in a blender, and puree. Pour puree back in bowl with chopped strawberries.
  • 3. Whip the cream with remaining sugar and vanilla until cream is stiff and holds peaks easily. Fold berries and cream together, and serve immediately, or refrigerate for up to two hours.

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