Strawberries are one of summer’s delights! They are delectable on their own, or with a little bit of cream poured over them. But there are many more fun and delicious things to do with strawberries. Here are some of our favorites:
Meringues with fresh strawberries and cream
This is a very light alternative to strawberry shortcake. Most people don’t realize this, but meringues are very easy to make: all you need is four egg whites and a cup of sugar. Ideally, you should use a half cup of powdered sugar and a half cup of caster sugar. Caster sugar is sugar that is ground finer than regular granulated sugar. You can find it in stores that sell baking supplies.
Start by preheating your oven to 210 degrees and lining two baking sheets with parchment paper. Next, place the four egg whites in a mixing bowl. Ideally, the egg whites should be room temperature. Start mixing the eggs on medium speed until they get frothy. Then, turn the mixer to high speed and continue beating until the egg whites form soft peaks. Next, slowly beat in the caster sugar a teaspoon at a time. When all the caster sugar is added, turn off the mixer and sift a third of the powdered sugar over the mixture. Gently fold the sugar into the mixture. Continue to sift and fold in the remaining icing sugar a third at a time. When you are finished, the mixture will look soft and fluffy.
Drop spoonfuls of the mixture onto the baking sheets, making sure they are about an inch and a half apart. Bake for an hour and fifteen minutes, or until they are light brown and sound crisp when you tap them. Cool, cover with freshly sliced strawberries and whipped cream.
Strawberry butter is delicious, elegant and so easy to make we don’t even need to give you a recipe. It’s also a perfect way to use strawberries that are getting a little mushy. First, make sure to wash your strawberries well. This is important as strawberries are among the fruits most treated with chemicals and pesticides. In fact, they are one of the fruits most recommended to buy organic, if you can afford it. Once you wash the strawberries, smash them up and then mix them with softened butter until it turns a beautiful pink color. If you want it a little sweeter, you can sift some powdered sugar over it and stir in to taste. You can then form it into a log, rolled in plastic wrap or waxed paper. Alternatively, it can be stored in a glass jar. The strawberry butter is delicious on biscuits, bagels, muffins or even toast.
This is another very easy dessert to make. The sweetness of summer strawberries pairs perfectly with the oat based crunch. Start by mixing together:
- 6 cups fresh strawberries
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon corn starch
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Once this is mixed together, place in a shallow pan. Next, combine the following to make the topping:
- 1 cup oats
- 1 cup flour (you can use regular flour, but almond flour takes this to another level)
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
Crumble the topping evenly over the strawberry mixture and bake for 30-40 minutes in an oven that has been preheated to 350 degrees. It’s done when the topping is a deep golden brown and the strawberry mixture is bubbling around the edges. Serve with whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
TIP: Don’t wash your strawberries until you are ready to use them. If you wash them and put them in the refrigerator, the excess moisture can cause mold to develop.
We normally think of strawberries as sweet, but this recipe turns them into a savory sensation. At first it seems a little counter-intuitive to use strawberries in a pasta sauce, but it’s not that strange when you think about it. Tomatoes, which are commonly used in ragus and other past sauces, are also a fruit but are very savory when combined with other ingredients. This recipe for strawberry ragu is similar.
Finely dice a half cup of each:
- White onion
After dicing the above, cook them in a cup of olive oil, along with a half cup of pine nuts, for 45-60 minutes. When the vegetables are soft, add four cups roughly chopped strawberries and, on low heat, cook for two to three hours, stirring regularly until it turns into a thick, dark, rich sauce. Serve over pasta and taste the magic!
Strawberry and tomato sandwich
This easy recipe combines the acidity of tomatoes with the sweetness of strawberries to create a taste sensation. Start by cutting a handful of strawberries in half and lightly grilling them- a slight char brings out their savory character. Put these on a piece of flatbread with some sliced and salted tomatoes. Add goat cheese and garnish with mint and basil for the perfect summer lunch or light dinner.
Most people automatically assume gazpacho is made with tomatoes. However, it can be made with many fruits. As we saw in the ragu recipe above, strawberries can be a very good substitute for tomatoes and using them to make a summery gazpacho is no exception. Our favorite strawberry gazpacho recipe is this one from the restaurant Eleven Madison Park: Eleven Madison Park’s Strawberry Gazpacho. It’s a little more involved than the rest of the recipes in this article, but we think it is well worth the time.
Strawberry vodka lemonade
You can make a number of cocktails with fresh strawberries. One of our favorites is strawberry vodka lemonade. The sweetness of the strawberries is a perfect contrast to the tangy lemonade. It’s very easy to make and you can leave out the vodka for a refreshing mocktail.
For one drink, slice four strawberries and muddle them in an old fashioned glass. Add some ice, then pour in 1.5 ounces of your favorite vodka. Top with three ounces of lemonade and garnish with a fresh strawberry. Enjoy!
This is the perfect thing to serve at a summer pool party or dinner party. It’s easy to make, tastes delicious and will wow your guest.
To make enough for six glasses, you will need:
- 3 large handfuls of strawberries
- 1 fresh mint leaf
- A bottle of Champagne or other sparkling wine
Clean the strawberries, place them in a strainer and rinse well. Add the mint leaf to the strainer, then push the strawberries through the strainer into a bowl, using the back of a spoon (you’re not really after the pulp, just the juice.) Chill until ready to serve.
Divide the strawberry purée between six Champagne glasses, then carefully fill the glass with the bubbly and enjoy!
Did you know that Tennessee has an annual Strawberry Festival? It’s in Dayton, Tennessee which is just over an hour’s drive from The River Club. Another reason to visit The River Club and experience all the wonderful things Tennessee has to offer.