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My only complaint about having fresh fruits and veggies a plenty is that sometimes I don’t have a chance to eat them before they go bad. So my goal is always to come up with a list of recipes and search for those items that are involved. But if you do decide to randomly grab some produce, coming up with your own recipes can be fun too! And if worse comes to worst… just throw everything into a salad!
One thing I knew I had to make with the strawberries I picked at Duffield’s was…
Strawberry Shortcakes – Recipe from Mary Nolan of Chic & Easy
Preheat oven to 400
You will need:
1 1/2 pounds strawberries, stemmed and quartered
5 tablespoons sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2 tablespoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
For whipped cream:
1 1/2 cups heavy cream, chilled
3 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
1.) Mix strawberries and 3 TBS sugar and refrigerate for at least a half hour. This will get everything nice and sweet and create juices from the berries.
2.) Combine ingredients for whipped cream in a mixer and beat until soft peaks form. I suggest refrigerating for a bit to make sure it is cold and more firm.
3.) Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and 2 TBS sugar and salt in a bowl. Add heavy cream and mix well. Place mixture in a greased pan and bake 18-20 minutes until golden. I actually used a larger pan than suggested (8 inch) because I wanted to make thinner shortcakes so I could make smaller pieces.
4.) Remove pan from oven and allow to cool. If you are making regular sized shortcakes you will slice the shortcake in 6 pieces and slice in half. I searched for something small enough to make mini shortcakes and wound up using a champagne glass! It was perfect and the right size I was looking for. But a cookie cutter would work just as well
5.) Assemble! Top one piece of shortcake with the berries, then the cream and then the other shortcake piece.
I loved the mini version because it was a just right bite! Also, knowing that I picked these berries and actually worked for them, made them taste that much better. Strawberries are one fruit that I know will never go to waste, especially with recipes such as this one. And the flavors – the warm, cake-like shortcake, the creamy, sweet, whipped cream and the melt-in-your-mouth strawberries – well I just don’t think anything screams summer more than that!
If you asked me what my favorite dessert was I think I’d have to respond by saying, “Anything chocolate!!!” Anything? You might wonder. Hmm, yes. I’ve had all kinds of chocolate, even spicy chocolate. And I’ve had different things dipped in chocolate, like potato chips. And I still haven’t found chocolate that I didn’t like.
But if I really had to pick…it would be chocolate mousse. There is something about chocolate mousse. It is creamy, rich, airy, deep, sweet and dare I say, heavenly.
I will be honest that the only bad part is that it isn’t the easiest thing to make. It involves some steps that may be a little discouraging but I promise it will be worth it in the end.
You will need:
•8 oz. dark chocolate ( I used Dove chocolate squares)
•¼ cup of water
•2 TBS butter
•3 egg yolks
•2 TBS sugar
•¼ cup water
•1 ¼ cup whipping cream
1.) Begin by putting chocolate in a food processor until it is chopped into little pieces. Then, microwave the chocolate, first ¼ cup water and butter in a microwave safe bowl. I would suggest microwaving on low increments of time so that you can check on the mix and make sure it isn’t burning. Once everything is melted, stir and allow to completely cool.
2.) In a saucepan combine egg yolks, sugar and remaining water and heat to 160°. I would suggest using a candy thermometer to do this so it reaches the appropriate temperature.
3.) Remove from heat and whisk in chocolate mixture in a bowl. Set the bowl in another bowl filled with ice and stir until cooled. Lastly, fold in whipped cream and portion into bowls.
I suggest you sit down and take a moment to eat this mousse in a quiet place where you can just acknowledge how amazingly tasty it is. And realize that is doesn’t get more decadent than this…unless of course you decide to dip some chocolate covered chips in the mousse. I promise I won’t judge you!
∙1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour