HAPPY 4TH OF JULY! What's not to love about summer?! The current bounty of seasonal fruit is at its peak, this year seems to be over flowing with fruit that not only looks beautiful, but tastes of summer sunshine. Usually I am more focused on the vegetable harvest, however, in the last month the fruits of summer have caught my eye like never before. A plate or bowl is like an artful still life ~ worthy of any meal centerpiece. (Don't forget to eat it at the end of your meal.)
Strawberries stand out in my mind as the first of summer fruits to arrive at the market. When in season I can't get enough. My motto; "Get them NOW while they are in season and taste naturally sweet!" If you are lucky enough to live near a strawberry field where you can pick them yourself - DO IT and bring some friends and kids....and then go to work in the kitchen to create your own strawberry masterpiece - to EAT!
Cheers to summer fruit and summer holidays!
adapted from Weber's Art of the Grill
2 pints (4 cups) strawberries, hulled
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
2 1/4 teaspoon gelatin
1 cup heavy cream
1 oz. semisweet chocolate bar, (I used Scharffen Berger)
1/4 cup toasted almond slices
1. In a medium saucepan combine 1 1/2 pints strawberries, sugar, lemon juice, vanilla and almond extract. Heat over high heat and bring to a boil, cooking until the strawberries are soft about 5 minutes.
2. Transfer the strawberry mixture to a food processor and puree until smooth. Pour mixture into a small sauce pan and keep warm over low heat.
3. In a small bowl pour 1/4 cup cold water and stir in gelatin. Let stand for about 5 minutes.
4. Combine the gelatin mixture with the warm strawberry puree and stir until the gelatin is completely mixed and melted. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature.
5. In a large bowl, whip the heavy cream until it forms stiff peaks. Gently fold the strawberry puree into the whipped cream. Spoon the mousse into small serving bowls. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or up to 2 days.
6. To serve, make the chocolate curls using a vegetable peeler and sprinkle the chocolate curls on the mousse along with almond slices and remaining strawberries. Pin It