I don’t know about the place you live in but nowadays we are experiencing an interesting summer time in İstanbul. You have to make sure that your sunglasses and umbrella are with you before you get out of the house and I assure you that both will be used alternately during the day.
Experiencing such a wet and relatively cool summer is something new for us who live in here and makes me question the existence of a lot spoken and over used global warming issue. I really doubt whether this part of the globe is warming or getting cooler contrarily.
Thanks lord the capricious weather did not affect the abundance of summer fruits in the market. Everywhere is full of fresh strawberries with breathtaking fragrances and many other members of berry family. By the moment I came across these beauties at the neighborhood market, I decided to prepare one of my favorite summer desserts without any hesitation. I was planning to share some details of the food scenery in Paris but this could wait for a week unlike these fresh strawberries which should immediately turn into a delectable memory on my palate.
Strawberries can stay fresh only for a few days in the refrigerator with the condition that they kept in the paper bag they were put at first. They should not be washed and their caps should not be removed till you serve them. Otherwise your beautiful red strawberries would absorb excess water leaving them with a fading flavor and a degrading texture.
Strange but true, strawberries are a member of rose family. Could that be the reason of romance attached to them? I do not know why but one of my friends in the office once told me that she would be deeply affected from a guy who sent her fresh and zestful strawberries rather than a box of expensive chocolate. Probably she would also love to see a note attached to strawberries “will you berry me?”
It will be unfair to look at this delicious fruit only from a romantic point of view. Though this is not widely known, a serving of 7-8 strawberries contains more vitamin C compared with a mid-sized orange. Besides strawberry is a rich source of potassium, fibre, antioxidants, and heart disease-fighting flavonoids. So here another myth, “Anything too delicious is detrimental for your health” is buried under solid facts.
As for my recipe, I can assure you that it will bring you to ecstasy with the first spoon you take. Slivered crunchy almonds on top create perfect contrast with smooth and soft texture of mascarpone cream. Raspberry purée is just so right to balance the overall sweetness of dessert and to elevate the taste of strawberries.
In short, this is a perfect summer dessert for a perfect summer night. Even if your summer is a bit rainy like mine, you can still be sure that a glass of this beauty will dissipate the clouds in your head.
- 400 g (14,1 oz) mascarpone cheese
- 200ml (6,75 fl.oz) heavy cream, chilled at least 12 hours
- ½ cup confectioner’s sugar
- ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups strawberry, hulled and halved
- 1 cup raspberry purée (nothing added, plain raspberries just puréed in a food processor)
- ½ cup cranberry
- ⅔ cup slivered almond
|1.||Whip chilled cream in a large metal bowl with an electric mixer at high speed until it is firm and hard peaks are formed when you pull the mixer out of the bowl.|
|2.||Add vanilla extract and confectioner’s sugar and combine (you can still use mixer but at medium speed, one minute will be enough)|
|3.||Add mascarpone cheese to the bowl and combine them all with electric mixer at low speed for a few minutes more. Stop mixing when everything is blended and mixture gains a uniform, smooth texture. Do not over mix or the whole combination will get a yellowish, grainy texture (cream starts to turn into butter like thing if it is mixed too much)|
|4.||Take a white wine glass and scatter one tablespoon of cranberries at the bottom add some cream and spread.|
|5.||Pour some raspberry purée and again cover with cream and spread well. Place strawberries on the inner side of the glass as well as the middle part (be generous)|
|6.||Cover with some cream till you reach the top and spread. Sprinkle slivered almonds on top.|
|7.||Chill well before serving.|