While spring has sprung here in the Midwest and we’ve been gifted a few beautiful 80 degree days, we’re still a ways off from summer. It feels like it should be June but it is only April, which I’m reminded of when picking up some strawberries at the local grocery store. Although they look and smell like summer, the trucked-in berries (because it certainly isn’t warm enough to have local yet) give away their early spring secret when you bite into them. They just aren’t that sweet yet. Don’t fear friends, I have a way to have your summer temperatures and your summer berries too.
The idea is a little unconventional, I’ll be the first to admit that. Roasted strawberries, huh? Well, if you roast an onion or garlic, the sugars caramelize and you end up with something entirely different. I thought the same could certainly apply to strawberries that just weren’t quite there yet. I’m an impatient person and I wanted my summer dessert with my 80 degree days and patio lounging! So I set off on a way to make to do with the berries I had, but I wanted an interesting and unique way to dress them up.
Zabaglione (say zab-ah-yōn) is like the angel food cake of custards. It isn’t solid like a crème brûleé *yum* but instead, it is loose and airy and more like a thick sauce than a custard. Traditionally made with Marsala, I chose to liven it up a bit with some bubbly instead. No need to spend the big bucks on this kids, we’re cooking with it, so opt for a prosecco or cava. Of course, you are going to want something that is palatable because let’s face it, you are going to drink the rest of the bottle with dessert, aren’t you?! The real secret to zabaglione is a hand mixer. You whip all sorts of air into it as the eggs, sugar and bubbly are cooking and the result is a light, foamy sauce. It’s a little bit of heaven, I promise. The best part is that this is a perfect dessert for entertaining. While the strawberries roast (8 minutes – that’s it!) the sauce can be completely prepared and will be ready and waiting to blanket the berries in its boozy goodness.
roasted strawberries with zabaglione
recipe: jb’s pour house
1 pint strawberries, hulled and sliced in half
3 tsp. plus 1/2 c. sugar
4 egg yolks, room temperature
1/2 c. sparkling wine, such as prosecco or cava
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place strawberries cut side down on a large baking sheet covered in foil (trust me – makes clean up a breeze!). Sprinkle 3 tsp. sugar across the berries and place in the oven. Roast for 8-10 minutes or until strawberries have softened and sugars have begun to caramelize on tops of berries.
Using a double boiler, bring a small amount of water to boil in the lower pan (note – make sure the level of the water in the bottom pan is low enough that when the top pan is added, the water does not touch the bottom of the top pan). Combine egg yolks and sugar in the top saucepan of the double boiler. Using a hand mixer, thoroughly blend the egg yolks and sugar together until pale yellow, about 1 minute. Add the sparkling wine, mix to incorporate, and place the pan over the boiling water. Continue mixing with the hand mixer on medium-high speed until the mixture has thickened and doubled in size, about 6-7 minutes. For those concerned about egg safety, an instant read thermometer should register 140 degrees. Remove from heat.
Remove the strawberries from the oven and place in individual serving dishes. Spoon about 1/3 cup zabaglione over the top of the berries. If desired, garnish with a slice of fresh strawberry and mint. Serve immediately.
Enjoy a taste of the summer goodness to come!
All content and photographs © 2010 jb’s pour house