Monday, May 17, 2010

Strawberry Fields Forever

A sure sign of the season, fresh strawberries are as versatile as they are cute!

Sure to be a crowd (or personal pallette) pleaser, these treats are easy to make.

1. Lite Strawberry Milkshake

Approved by weight watchers, and -more importantly- me, this version of a soda shop classic is easy and pretty healthy.
In your blender, mix 1 c. Skim milk with 8 strawberries.
Add 1 Tbs. sugar and 5 ice cubes.
Mix in the blender until, well, it looks like a milkshake!

 2.  Strawberry Shortcake Jellies

Let's thank Martha Stewart for these.  (Easiest recipe to follow, super cute, and majorly delicious)

3. Strawberry Butter (or Cream Cheese)

Kyle whisked about 4 Tbs. butter with a dollup of honey to create some delicious honey butter.  Then he thought strawberries would be delicious in this, too.  Adding 2 Tbs. homemade strawberry jam, he created my new favorite condiment.  
For french toast one Sunday Morning, he whipped some cream cheese with the same jam, added some chopped strawberries and, of course, a dollup of honey.  

4. POPS!
 10 minutes prep time is all it takes to make these delicious and refreshing treats!  Simply puree some ripe berries and add some powdered sugar to the mix.  Pour in a plastic cup and let the freezer do the rest of the work!

5. Strawberry cupcakes

Okay, so the cupcake is just a yellow cupcake.  If you want to use a mix, go for it!  Making it from scratch?  Here's a tip-- Use cake flour, but not the self-rising kind!
For the ridiculously decidant icing and filling, follow this recipe for Strawberry Merringue Buttercream:
A. In the heatproof bowl of an electric mixer set over a saucepan of simmering water, combine egg whites and sugar. Cook, whisking constantly, until sugar has dissolved and mixture is warm to the touch (about 160 degrees).

B. Attach the bowl to the mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Beat the egg-white mixture on high speed until it holds stiff (but not dry) peaks. Continue beating until the mixture is fluffy and cooled, about 6 minutes.

C. Switch to the paddle attachment. With mixer on medium-low speed, add butter several tablespoons at a time, beating well after each addition. (If frosting appears to separate after all the butter has been added, beat on medium-high speed until smooth again, 3 to 5 minutes more.) Beat in vanilla. Beat on lowest speed to eliminate any air bubbles, about 2 minutes. Stir in strawberry jam with a rubber spatula until frosting is smooth.

6. Strawberry Shortcake Cookies!!!
Make your favorite drop bisquit recipe.  But, to the mix add: 1/2 c. pureed strawberries, 1/4 c. strawberry jam, and 4 Tbs. brown sugar. 
Make them smaller than you would the bisquits, brush with an egg white, and sprinkle with raw sugar.

Serve warm with a dollup of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

7. Strawberry Cream Cake
Okay, so really, this is just angel food cake (or yellow cake if you'd rather, or a sponge cake...) layered with Dream Whip and Strawberries.

Want to make it Swedish, whip the strawberries and cream together before layering.

8. Strawberry Jam

Since many strawberry treats can be made with strawberry jam, it only makes sense to have a couple easy ways to make it on the list.

The easiest way to make jam is, of course, to make freezer jam.  The downside with freezer jam is that it doesn't last all that long after you take it out of the ice box.
You need to mix 2 c. crushed strawberries with 4 c. sugar. Add in 3/4 c. H2O and 1 pkg. of dry pectin. Pour into the jars and freeze.  (Leave it in the freezer until you need it)

My favorite recipe for shelf jam is also pretty easy.
Just dump about 6 c. berries into your blender and add 5-7 c. sugar (how sweet do you want it?).  Transfer it to a pot and boil it, adding the pectin as you go.  (*Note, I add a bit more pectin than the box says.  I think its too runny otherwise.)
Pour into the jars, put on a lid, and boil in your canning pot.  Voila!  Easy and delicious.

9. Strawberry Lemonade
Best lemonade recipe is my sisters.  Simply put your strawberries in your blender and puree them, add your water and 1 can lemonade concentrate.  Add some lemons and whole strawberries and you have a drink that's as pretty as it is delicious.

10. My favorite Strawberry Shortcake
I think that a strawberry shortcake is best sans shortcake.  I prefer buttery bisquits topped with strawberries, vanilla bean ice cream, more strawberries, whipped cream, and, well, more strawberries!

**Looking forward to the Strawberry picking season!**

1 comment:

  1. *DROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOLING!* These all look amazing! I'm for SURE going to have to try the strawberry shortcake cookies!