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Under meringue, inside chocolate ... strawberry stunners.

Under meringue, inside chocolate . . . strawberry stunners

Wonderful on their own, strawberries are stunning with a little embellishment to spotlight their beauty and flavor.

A cloud of soft meringue floats on a bed of warm, orange-flavored berries in the first simple dessert. Chocolate cages hold kirsch-flavored berries and cream in the second choice.

Meringue Cloud with Strawberries

2 tablespoons pine nuts or slivered almonds

6 cups strawberries, rinsed, hulled, and sliced

About 1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/4 cup orange-flavor liqueur or orange juice

3 large egg whites

1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

1 tablespoon powdered sugar

Place nuts in an 8- or 9-inch pie or cake pan and bake in a 350| oven until golden, about 10 minutes. Remove nuts from oven. Turn oven temperature to 500|.

Meanwhile, mix strawberries with 1 to 2 tablespoons granulated sugar (to taste), and liqueur. Pour into a shallow 2- to 3-quart serving pan or ovenproof dish.

In a large bowl, combine egg whites and cream of tartar; beat with an electric mixer on high speed until foamy. Gradually add 6 tablespoons granulated sugar, beating just until whites will hold stiff, moist peaks. Mound mixture over center of strawberries. Sprinkle with nuts. Sift powdered sugar on top of meringue.

Bake in a 500| oven just until top is golden, about 4 minutes. Serve at once. Makes 6 servings.

Per serving: 293 cal.; 2 g protein; 29 g carbo.; 19 g fat; 33 mg chol.; 12 mg sodium.

Chocolate Cages with Strawberries

1/2 cup semisweet chocolate baking chips

2 teaspoons solid shortening

3 cups strawberries, rinsed, hulled, and sliced

2 tablesppons sugar

2 tablespoons kirsch or light rum

1/2 cup whipping cream, softly whipped, or about 1 1/2 cups vanilla ice cream

Smoothly wrap a rolling pin with a piece of plastic wrap; line a 10- by 15-inch pan with plastic wrap. Set the pin diagnoally across pan.

Stir chocolate with shortening in the top of a double boiler over hot water just until melted. (Or heat in a nonmetal bowl in a microwave oven at half-power--50 percent --until melted, about 3 minutes; stir occasionally.) Place over hot water to keep fluid.

With a spoon, drizzle streaks of the melted chocolate diagonally over the curve of the rolling pin to make 4 or 5 lines (each 4 to 5 in. long) about 1/2 inch apart. Repeat in the opposite direction, crossing the first lines (the lines do not need to be perfectly straight: see picture above). Make another cage the same way. Chill until firm, about 10 minutes. Gently lift plastic wrap off rolling pin and peel wrap from chocolate. Repeat with remaining chocolate to make 2 more chocolate cages. If made ahead, store cages, covered, in refrigerator up to 2 days.

Mix strawberries with sugar and kirsch.

To serve, place 1 chocolate cage concave side up on a dessert plate. Spoon 1/4 of the cream or small scoops of the ice cream into and spilling out of the cage. Spoon about 1/4 of the strawberries onto the cream. Makes 4 servings.

Per serving: 150 cal.; 3 g protein; 32 g carbo.; 2 g fat; 3 mg chol.; 27 mg sodium.

Photo: Sugar- and nut-crusted cloud of meringue bakes briefly on a bed of orange-scented berries

Photo: Drizzle melted chocolate over rolling pin to make see-through cages to hold cream and berries
COPYRIGHT 1988 Sunset Publishing Corp.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1988 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:recipes
Date:May 1, 1988
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