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PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) – It’s a berry good time of year.

“It’s that time of year when everything is coming out strawberries, raspberries, blueberries,” chef Kenneth Wollenberg said as he prepared a variety of dishes using this seasons berry crop.

Wollenberg teaches baking and pastry arts at Johnson & Wales University.

Strawberry ShortcakeFor biscuits:

1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp. salt

3 tbsp. baking powder

4 to 6 tbsp. butter

1 cup milk

Preheat oven to 425 F. Sift the dry ingredients together. Cut in butter with a fork until mixture resembles a coarse corn meal. Add milk and mix until just incorporated; do not over mix.

Spoon about 2 tablespoons per biscuit onto a greased cookie pan and bake 20-25 minutes until lightly golden.

For Chantilly cream:

1 cup heavy whipping cream, cold

2 to 3 tbsp. granulated sugar

Vanilla extract, to taste Combine all ingredients and whip until a firm peak is achieved. Reserve in refrigerator.

For strawberries:

1 pint fresh strawberries

1/2 cup granulated sugar, more or less to desired taste

Thoroughly wash strawberries and drain well. Slice into 1/4-inch thick slices. Toss with desired amount of sugar. This may be done a day ahead of time.

Split and place a biscuit on a dessert plate. Top generously with strawberries and syrup from the strawberries. Top with a dollop of Chantilly cream.

Serves 4 to 6.

Fresh Assorted Berry Fruit TartDough cookie crust:

1 lb. butter

1 cup granulated sugar

1 whole egg

3-1/2 cups cake flour

In a bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and blend in thoroughly. Add flour and mix until thoroughly incorporated.

Spread dough in 8-inch tart pan. Chill until needed. When ready, preheat oven to 375 F. Bake for 10-15 minutes until golden brown. Cool and remove tart shell from pan before filling.

Pastry cream:

2 cups milk

1/2 cup sugar

1 pinch salt

3 tbsp. cornstarch

1-1/2 tsp. cake flour

2 egg yolks

1 whole egg

Vanilla, to taste

2 tbsp. butter

Melted chocolate, as needed

Apricot glaze or jelly, as needed

Toasted slivered almonds, as needed

2-1/2 cups of fresh berries (or slices of mandarin oranges or kiwi)

Place 1-1/2 cups of milk in a heavy sauce pan with 1/4 cup sugar and bring to a boil. In a bowl, mix together the salt, cornstarch, flour and the remaining sugar. Slowly whisk in remaining milk. Add the eggs and mix until very smooth.

Warm the egg mixture with boiled milk and return to sauce pan. Bring back to a boil while whisking and scraping the pan with a rubber spatula to prevent scorching. Remove from the heat; stir in the vanilla and butter.

Cool; refrigerate until needed (avoid skinning of the surface by covering with plastic wrap). When ready for use, whip vigorously until creamy.

Fill the tart shell with the pastry cream about 1/2-inch deep; brush shell lightly with melted chocolate to prevent crust from softening.

Top with fresh fruit, creating rows around the tart starting from the outside and working toward the middle until completely topped.

Brush fruit and sides of tart with apricot glaze or jelly that has been heated to a liquid state.

Coat outside of tart with toasted almonds by pressing nuts into shell using your fingers.

Portion with a serrated knife, sawing gently to preserve the fruit arrangement. Serves 8 to 10.

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