The strawberry plants on my balcony are really growing in leaps and bounds right now with all the sunny weather we’ve been having here over the past two weeks. Every day a few of the firm, white berries turn pinkish and soft and then move on to a deep crimson red.
I couldn’t wait to have a berry dessert with the arrival of all this warm weather but the fresh berries on the market are still to pricey and the ones I’m growing aren’t entirely ripe yet, so I decided to use some frozen blueberries and raspberries that I had stored up in our freezer for just such an occasion.
I made this fool based on a dessert I had recently at my sister in law’s house when we went there for a delicious raclette dinner a few weeks back. I made up four dessert glasses the other day to welcome the arrival of my mother and brother who are visiting me here in Germany from the US for the next couple of weeks. I am very excited to have two of my close family members visiting us here for a few weeks this summer and Anna is really enjoying having her “Grammy” and one of her favorite uncles here to play with her and I’m delighted that I get to speak more English around the house too!
We all absolutely loved this dessert. It was quick and easy to make, cool and refreshing and really, really tasty. So don’t be a fool and make this one right away… seriously, you won’t regret it!
Berry Fool with Mascarpone Cream
For the Berries:
- 3 cups fresh or frozen Blueberries (I used frozen)
- 3 cups fresh or frozen Raspberries (I used frozen)
- 6 tablespoons Raw Cane Sugar, Demerara Sugar or Sugar in the Raw
- Juice of one Lemon (About 2 tablespoons)
Measure out 2 cups of each type of berry and put in a large sauce pot. Set aside the other cup of each berry. Add the sugar and lemon juice to the pot and stir while cooking over medium/high heat. Let the berries simmer uncovered for about 25 minutes while stirring occasionally. While the berries are cooking prepare the cream. When the berries are done they should be a little thickened but not like jam. Divide the cooked berries evenly between the dessert glasses. Sprinkle the remaining whole berries, that were set aside, on top of the cooked berry mixture in each glass evenly, then spoon a generous amount of mascarpone cream on top of each filled berry cup and garnish with almond brittle pieces, this part is optional… You can leave the nuts out all together if you like or you can alternately just sprinkle dry toasted almonds on top of each cup instead of making the brittle. However, it doesn’t take much time to make the almond brittle and it’s definitely worth the extra effort!
For the Cream:
- 1 cup Mascarpone cream
- 1/2 cup unsweetened Yogurt
- 1 tablespoons Raw Cane Sugar, Demerara Sugar or Sugar in the Raw
- 1 Vanilla Bean
Cut the vanilla bean in half length wise and scrape out the seeds. Put the seeds in a bowl with the other ingredients and stir together until everything is well combined. Store in the fridge until ready to use.
For the Nut Topping (optional):
- 1 cup sliced Almonds
- 2 tablespoons Butter
- 3 tablespoons Raw Cane Sugar, Demerara Sugar or Sugar in the Raw
Heat a frying pan on high heat and add the butter and sugar. Stir together to incorporate the sugar with the melted butter and at the same time stir in the sliced almonds. Over high heat, but not so high that you burn the butter or the nuts, stir the mixture until the nuts start to turn brown and are fragrant. Just when you think all the nuts have browned or they are starting to turn too dark remove from the heat and transfer to a sheet of baking paper or aluminum foil. Press the mixture out flat and allow to cool at room temperature. When cool break small pieces of the brittle off to garnish the top of your dessert cups. Enjoy!