Monday, June 20, 2011

Strawberry Yogurt Cream

There has been lots of cooking going on in my new kitchen, but not so much writing about it. I made this cream exactly one week ago to welcome Sami back from a short trip.

This dessert is one that I would classify as rather a fail. It was delicious (if not quite sweet enough!), but it didn't gel. I still haven't figured out how to work this agar-agar stuff. Everyone I've read about it says it works just like gelatin, but they lie, as far as I can see. On the other hand, look--ice! I have room to make ice in my new freezer!

Still--delicious strawberries in season, yogurt, whipped cream. Even though we drank it from the cups rather than unmolding it, we enjoyed this dessert--it was gone the next day. I just hope that by the time the next dessert involving gelatin rolls around, I've figured out how to make things gel.

Here's the recipe. Make it once you've mastered gelatin--or a substitute.

Strawberry Yogurt Cream
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
2 T. + 2 t. cold tap water
1 lb. strawberries, washed, hulled, and puréed (except for 6 pretty ones)
1/4 c. (1.75 oz.) sugar (or more--taste your strawberries)
Red food coloring, if you like
3/4 c. (6 oz.) unflavored yogurt--I used Greek
1 T. lemon juice
2 T. (1 oz.) dark rum or brandy (I bet something orange-y like Cointreau would be nice, too)
Pinch salt
1 t. vanilla
1/2 c. (4 oz.) whipping cream

Sprinkle the gelatin over the water in a small cup and let stand until it softens. Meanwhile, put the strawberries and sugar in a medium saucepan and heat until it just starts to boil. Off the heat, add the gelatin and, if you like, add a few drops of food coloring. Strain the mixture into a bowl and let cool down until kind of warm but not hot.
Whisk the yogurt, lemon juice, booze, salt, and vanilla into the strawberry mixture. Then place the bowl over a larger bowl filled about halfway with ice and water. Let cool and thicken, stirring occasionally. In the meantime, whip the cream. When the strawberry mixture is starting to thicken (and you're justifiably starting to feel quite superior to me), fold in the whipped cream. Pour the mixture into 6 small custard cups or whatever you'd like to serve the cream in. Refrigerate until cold and firm--Maida says you can also freeze them.
If these have worked for you, you should be able to unmold them onto plates and top with the pretty strawberries. If not, top the custard cup with a pretty strawberry and serve with a spoon--or a straw.

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