As summer gets into full swing many of our favourite fruits are coming into season. Tart raspberries and juicy peaches, apricots and sharp popping gooseberries. But there is one we associate with Britishness more than any other – the strawberry.
Although available all year in supermarkets, we tend to steer clear and use them when they are at their best. A ripe strawberry in summer is a million miles away from a watery imported fruit in the depths of winter!!!
We use them extensively throughout their season, putting them in pimms, jellies, meringues, macerating them in our home made elder flower cordial, serving them with white chocolate parfait…
We know there are few things more pleasurable than eating a big bowl of strawberries with some thick cream, but if you fancy rustling up something a bit different, have a look at these recipes from our kitchen…
Lemon and elderflower posset with elderflower macerated strawberries
For the posset;
600g double cream
125g caster sugar
2 lemons, juiced
4 heads of elderflower, shaken to get rid of any beasties
bring the cream, sugar and elderflower heads to the boil, simmer for 2 minutes, remove from the heat and allow to infuse for 10 minutes of so. Pass through a fine sieve, add the lemon juice and then portion into individual glasses. Set in the fridge.
For the strawberries;
Hull and quarter a punnet or 2 of good quality strawberries, pour over a few good glugs of elder flower cordial (preferably homemade) and leave for an hour or 2.
Serve the strawberries on top of the set posset and enjoy.
Strawberry jelly – this is a million miles away from anything you’ll get in packet. Good to use up any over ripe strawberries you might have…
500g strawberries, hulled and chopped
60g caster sugar
1/2 lime, juice
1 shot of creme de fraise (in the event you have any!)
5 leaves of gelatine (bloomed)
Put all ingredients in a bowl. Clingfilm tightly. Place over a pan of simmering water and cook for half an hour.Pass through a very fine sieve or muslin and discard the fruit pulp (or use for making a fool etc). Don’t push the mixture through! Let it drip by itself or you’ll end up with a cloudy jelly.Now weigh the amount of liquid you have. It should be somewhere between 250 and 350 grams. Slowly add water to make it upto 500g. Warm a small amount of this liquid up and dissolve the gelatine in this. Pass through a sieve back into the bulk of the mixture and stir well. Divide between individual glasses (or, if you’re really cool, pour into your huge rabbit shaped jelly mould) and set in the fridge. Eat with fresh strawberries and some good quality ice cream.