Valentines Day Dinner: Part the Third
So, in my poorly-planned choosing of a mate, I selected one who is lacking something quite crucial: a sweet tooth. He doesn’t bat an eye at any of the cakes or cookies that come across this blog. The traditional Valentine’s molten-chocolate-raspberry whatnot wasn’t going to cut it. What smacked me right in the face as soon as I entered Whole Foods? Fresh strawberries! (granted they were long-stemmed and right next to chocolate melts, but it got the mind turning). In the midst of the WORST WINTER EVER, fresh strawberries and homemade whipped cream sounded like sheer bliss.
There is no recipe to this…just some banging around the kitchen. Stop breathing into that paper bag, you can do it too. you can live without recipes. I’ll number the steps if that will make you feel better. Yes? Ok.
1. Wash and cut strawberries into halves. Place in bowl, sprinkle a small palm-full of sugar on top (maybe 2-3 tablespoons). Toss to coat strawberries. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and put in fridge to sit.
2. The whipped cream. “Oh dear that sounds so fancy and complicated, homemade whipped cream!” you gasp. How do you do it? YOU WHIP THE HELL OUT OF IT.
3. Whip the cream (use the whisk attachment, not a paddle or those beater things) until it starts to thicken. You’ll see little bubbles form and will feel the consistency change (if you’re using a hand mixer).
4. Add 1T liquor, if using, and a tablespoon of sugar for good measure. (if omitting the liquor, a teaspoon or two of vanilla extract)
5. Beat until cream forms stiff peaks (When you bring the whisk out of the cream, the tip does not curl over). Be mindful of this and do not over-whisk or you will have a bowlful of homemade butter.
6. Spoon berries on plate. Top with whipped cream. (the equivalent to my father’s now favorite “throw shit on a plate.”) Consume. If you’re feeling frisky, top with some shaved chocolate and mint spring left over from the lamb.