Tuesday, July 24, 2012

An Easy, Cool, and Delicious Summer Treat

I’m home!!!!

I recently got home from a trip to Europe.  Well I guess I could include Asia in that because we went to Istanbul and it is technically on two continents so…  I digress.  When my friend Kim (one of the best travel partners next to besides husband), and I visited Chatsworth.  I had wanted to visit here for years and we finally got it on the trip itinerary.  We traveled up from Stoke on Trent to get there and arrived right at lunch time. 
Me, outside Chatsworth.  The home that was Jane Austen's inspiration for Pemberely
We decided to have lunch before heading into tour the house and grounds.  Our lunch was delicious but I can’t remember what it was.  What I DO remember is the dessert.  Kim had always wanted to try Eton Mess so she got some to try.  I had heard of it but didn’t know what it was.  Well she thought it was wonderful and asked me to try it and I did and it was heavenly!  It was a cool, sweet, and refreshing treat! 
This picture dose not do this yummy treat justice.  You are just going to have to trust me on this one. 

Since we have got home, we have both tested it out on our families at dinners and it has been a hit.  Especially when it is hot in Arizona, a cool dessert is wonderful!  Here is the recipe I used.  I don’t know the one Kim used but I will compare it sometime and let you know. 

Eton Mess (Serves 6)
6 oz (175 g) golden granulated sugar
3 large egg whites

 (*note- the above ingredients are to make the meringue.  I just used store bought meringues already made.  They came in 7 ounce containers holding approximately 28 cookies.  For this recipe you would need about 4 oz. or about 20 cookies.)

1 lb (450 g) fresh strawberries, hulled

1 rounded T powdered sugar
1 pint (570 ml) heavy whipping cream

To make meringue:
First, have the caster sugar measured out ready, then place the egg whites in a clean bowl and whisk until they form soft peaks. Add the caster sugar, about a tablespoon at a time and continue to whisk (beat) until each T of sugar has been thoroughly whisked in. Now take rounded dessertspoonfuls of the mixture and place them in rows on a lined baking tray (sheet) (I use either parchment or brown paper). Place the tray in the 250-275 degree oven on the centre shelf, and leave the meringues there for 1 hour. Turn off the oven and leave the meringues in the oven to dry out overnight, or until the oven is completely cold.
Begin here if using store bought meringues: 

When you’re ready to make the pudding, chop half the strawberries and place them in a blender together with the powdered sugar. Whiz the whole lot to a puree, then pass it through a nylon sieve to remove the seeds (I don’t do this). Now chop the rest of the strawberries and whip up the double cream to the floppy stage.
All the above can be done in advance, but when you are ready to serve, break up the meringues into roughly 1 inch pieces (I actually do this ahead of time, also). Place them in a large mixing bowl, add the chopped strawberries, then fold the cream in and around them. After that, gently fold in all but about 2 T of the puree to give a marbled effect. Finally, pile the whole lot into a serving dish, spoon the rest of the puree over the surface and serve as soon as possible.

P.S. Everyone I’ve served this to has loved it.


Kim said...

First, thanks for the compliment. We do travel rather well together, don't we?

This dessert is so lovely and easy. Even better that we were at Chatsworth for the inaugural taste.

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