As I’d recently announced, down here in Florida, strawberries have invaded the fruit scene–taking over the produce aisles, farm stands, and anywhere that fruit is sold with incredibly fresh, delicious, local strawberries available at a steal of a price. Those supple, round, blushing berries caught my eye day after day, and I found myself drawn to their sweet siren’s song. 3 lbs for $5? Don’t mind if I do. Oh, still on sale? Sure, I’ll take another. Oh why hello, still there? Sure thing. Ah, but what if the mangoes find out? And so on and so forth. Good thing these things are healthy for you or I’d be in big trouble. Strawberries and I have been having a secret rendezvous on a weekly basis, and here we are in April, and I’ve lost count of the sheer number of strawberries I have been lusting over. But let me tell you, I have been seduced, and it seems that a number of you have been as well.
So, without further ado, in roughly the order I received the entries, here’s what fellow strawberry suitors/food bloggers from around the world have been making with the winter crop of strawberries. I know I certainly have a lot of fun new things to try and a lot of great new blogs to explore, so go ahead and check out all of these delicious dishes! There is definitely something for everyone. With the summer crop of strawberries coming soon, all of this seduction can turn to strawberry summer flings (have I beat the metaphor to death yet?).
Thanks everybody for participating and for making this event (my first event!) a success! Also thanks for feeding my strawberry addiction, you enablers!
|Deb (Key West, FL, USA) of Deb’s Key West Wine and Garden prepared a Spinach Salad With Stawberries and Brown Buttered Pecans. Deb anticipated tons of strawberry desserts, so she brought a simple and delicious spinach salad with brown buttered pecans, and a delicious raspberry/honey/dijon vinaigrette. Starter or dessert? You decide.|
|Anali (Quincy, MA, USA) of Anali’s First Amendment baked some Strawberry Muffincakes. She has a dilemma I entirely understand–is it a muffin or a cupcake? These muffincakes have strawberry puree in the batter and are topped with a sweet vanilla glaze–a great way to start the day or to end a meal.|
|Madelyn Rodriguez (San Juan, Puerto Rico) of KarmaFree Cooking brought three strawberry dishes to the occasion.
First, we start with a Spinach Strawberry Salad. This rendition is a mix of spinach, onions, and of course, strawberries, all topped with a mix of balsamic and honey for a tasty way to eat healthy.
Then, to fight the Puerto Rico heat, we cool off with some Strawberry Banana Sherbet. Blending some fresh fruits, juice, a bit of sugar, and giving it time in the freezer yields a great way to cool off.
And lastly, for dessert, a Strawberry Kanten. This treat uses agar flakes, a vegetarian substitute for gelatin (I believe), and is a custard of apple, strawberry, almond, and maple. Sounds like a fresh and lively treat!
|Irma Rode (Germany) of Honigmilch baked a Strawberry Custard Cheese Torte. This was a layering of light sponge cake, a rich custard cheese filling, and topped off with fresh strawberries. Looks like a mouth-watering way to end a meal.|
|Kathleen (FL, USA) of Kathleen’s Vegetarian Kitchen baked some Strawberry Oatmeal Squares. This sounds especially good for those of us who tend to have quick junk for breakfast during the week–I’ve been wishing I had this instead of my granola bars for the past week, that’s for sure! This is a baked layering of oats, berries, and a sweet strawberry sauce that sounds excellent.|
||Joy (Los Angeles, CA, USA) of Joy The Baker prepared two desserts.
First, she made a light, eggless, lightly tangy Strawberry Buttermilk Ice Cream, and as a big fan of home-made ice cream, this one definitely caught my eye as a delicious way to present strawberries in ice cream form.
Next, she baked a Brown Butter and Cardamom Spiced Sugar Paper with Cream and Strawberries, which is composed of layers of “sugar paper” (think sweet, spiced filo dough), strawberries, and whipped cream. This looks decadent and delicious.
|Kay (FL, USA) of Kitchen Jouissance baked some Strawberry Shortcake Cookies. These cookies are very soft sugar cookies, filled with a whipped pastry cream and strawberries, and that description really caught my eye (one of my favorite desserts in COOKIE FORM?!). Despite my love for the last meal of the day (dessert!), I don’t give cookies nearly enough attention. This looks like a definite entry on the cookie to-do list.|
|Y (Sydney, Australia) of Lemonpi baked some Strawberry Jam ‘Snails’ with clotted cream. The snails are a curled scone and lined with not strawberry jam, but one better: strawberry butter! This was paired with a rich clotted cream and it sounds like a mouth watering treat.|
|Paula Hennig (AL, USA) at Half Baked baked a Strawberry Lemon Curd Tart which is quite tempting! Can you believe, I, living in the land of citrus, have never had a lemon curd? This looks like the recipe that will be my introduction to lemon curds–you start with a sweet pastry crust, fill it with a lemon curd, and top with strawberries and whipped cream for a sweet and tangy treat. I haven’t tried this combination of flavors of yet, but I most definitely will–it looks fantastic.|
|Robert (Charleston, SC, USA) at Al Forno Charleston, in just as much of a panic as I to use all of these amazing strawberries before they go bad (which is always just way too quick) made a Strawberry Ice Cream. The result is rich and amazing, and for anybody out there who has been turned off to strawberry ice creams after having some bland store-bought variety, home-made strawberry ice cream is most definitely a mind-blowing experience.|
Bertha Santoso (San Jose, CA, USA) at Gourmet Baking baked us several treats.
First, a Shortcake aux Fraises. This is a different take on a strawberry shortcake that will have you drooling on your keyboard–Bertha prepared two layers of vanilla chiffon cake, some chantily cream flavored with Cointreau in between, a clear glaze on top, and what else? Of course, the strawberries! There’s a real attention to detail, and me being completely inept when it comes to decorating a cake, I am jealous of how great this thing looks–even the chocolate/mint leaves as garnish!
Next, she baked a Strawberry Tart (Tarte aux Fraise), composed of a pate brisee crust, brushed with chocolate, filled with cream diplomat (pastry cream lighted with whipped cream), and quite beautifully topped off with a fanned arrangement of sliced strawberries. This looks like quite a refreshing and delicious tart (and not to mention the miniatures she made–picture this but in finger food form).
Lastly, she combined some of the leftover elements from the tart, some puff pastry, and made a Mille-Feuille aux Fraise. That is definitely an impressive way to use leftovers!
|Susan (San Diego, CA, USA) at Food Blogga prepared a Seductive Strawberry Salad, and from somebody who isn’t a big salad person, I have to say that this looks really good. Wild arugula, baby spinach, strawberries, mango, blood orange, mint, basil, nuts–a very seductive salad by any standard! This might even have me making salad at home which is no small feat!|
|Terry B (Chicago, IL, USA) at Blue Kitchen prepared a twist on the classic Italian treat of balsamic macerated strawberries: Strawberries & Red Wine. This is one of those simpler dishes that through its simplicity and use of high quality ingredients, really allows for the quality and the flavor of the berries to shine through that sounds really tasty. Plus, it reminds me of sangria, so that earns extra bonus points!|
|Kevin (Toronto, Ontario, Canada) at Closet Cooking baked Strawberry Sour Cream Bread. While strawberries aren’t quite in season in his area yet, he still had some in the freezer from the prior season, and what better way to make room than to bake a delicious loaf of bread? This was quick and easy to prepare and a delicious way to start the morning for many days to come. Sounds like I have a very good reason to throw a number of strawberries in the freezer while I still can!|
|Thip (San Francisco, CA, USA) at Bonbini! baked a Charlotte Russe. This is a cold dessert of strawberry balsamic white chocolate bavarois (Bavarian cream) set in lady fingers atop a biscuit joconde. The combination of flavors and delicate textures here sounds delightful and it looks like a real pleasure to eat. She also includes a variety of different presentations of this dessert that all simply look stunning.|
||Ivy (Athens, Greece) at Kopiaste, to Greek Hospitality
First, she baked a Torta Fragole / Strawberry Cake. Things began with a sponge cake, then some creme patisserie, some whipping cream, and finally, a strawberry sauce to top it all off. This was all beautifully decorated with more strawberries and ladyfingers. This is certainly quite a birthday cake!
Then, Ivy also baked a Strawberry Pavlova and Rhubarb Sauce. After receiving a generous gift from a fellow food blogger, Ivy found herself experimenting with rhubarb, and created a light as air pavlova cake for her guests, decorated with rhubarb sauce, strawberries, and whipped cream, which sounds like a really elegant, and light way to finish a meal. While merengue doesn’t keep very long in the presence of such juicy fruit, finishing this off in time wasn’t a problem!
|Sarah Bialock (Yuma, AZ, USA) at Homemade decided to try something new that I’ve always wondered about as well: Strawberry Bread. The vibrant red goes to a more muted pink, but once the bread cools off a bit, the flavor is still very present and very tasty.|
|Elizabeth M. Griffiths (Baltimore, MD, USA) at Strawberries in Paris baked a light-as-air Strawberry Whipped Cream-filled Angel Food Cake. The angel food cake was filled with a strawberry whipped cream and pounded chocolate wafers and was frosted with strawberry whipped cream for a beautiful presentation.|
Pam Loudon (Birmingham, AL, USA) at Pamela’s Kitchen prepared two strawberry dishes.
Before we dive into dessert, she prepared a Strawberry Mandrin Orange Salad with Balsamic that looks delicious. The salad also includes sugared almonds and the dressing contains balsamic, Dijon, and honey, among other tasty things.
Then, for dessert, she baked a Strawberry Panna Cotta with Lime Melt Aways, a simple, creamy custard treat that is always a very big hit. It sounds like a great way to finish a meal on a light note with very fresh, spring-time flavors.
|SilverMoon Dragon (Melbourne, Australia) at Dragon Musings baked a strawberry variation on an “infamous Apple Dumpling recipe”: Strawberry and Apple Dumplings to Die For. These dumplings contain slivers of both apple and strawberry, packaged in puff pastry and baked in a sweet syrup of butter, sugar, and something of a surprise ingredient: Mountain Dew! Definitely worth a look, especially given the rave reviews.|
|TBC (USA) at The Budding Cook prepared Balsamic Strawberries with Whipped Mascarpone Cheese. From the photo, this looks like a sophisticated ice cream sundae, but its much more than that: you have macerated strawberries, a balsamic syrup, and a vanilla infused, whipped mascarpone, which when all put together yields instant gratification and a great combination of sweet, tart, and intense flavors.|
|Dhanggit (Southern France, France) at Dhanggit’s Kitchen was inspired by memories of some apple turnovers from a pattisserie in France, and so she baked Rhubarb and Strawberries Turnovers (Chausson aux pommes ). Mid-cooking, the rhubarb scared her husband away, but the final combination of strawberry and rhubarb brought him back (and really, who could resist it!). This turnover involved an extended period of macerating the strawberries and the rhubarb, and then separately cooking each and reducing a thick syrup, all of which was quite artfully packaged in puff pastry dough and baked for what must have been a delicious treat.|
|Lori (San Diego, CA USA) at The Recipe Girl baked a Strawberry-Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding. This bread pudding started with a loaf of challah bread and was creamy, loaded with strawberries, almonds, and adorned with chocolate chips for garnish and to bring it all together. As a lover of bread pudding who is always delighted to see more than the usual bourbon sauce (which is also nonetheless fantastic), this sounds like a great, comforting dessert to me!|
|Ginny (Washington, DC, USA) at Just Get Floury baked a Hazelnut Strawberry Layer Cake. With inspiration from a new favorite book given to her from a favorite blog, this light cake was largely composed of hazelnuts and layered over a filling of strawberries and strawberry buttercream, all temptingly frosted with more strawberry buttercream. For somebody who claims not to be good at decorating cakes, Ginny would have fooled me–she obviously hasn’t seen some of my more visually stunning masterpieces!|
|Johanna (Melbourne, Australia) at Green Gourmet Giraffe Blog provides the interesting and peculiar history of the strawberry. Craving a warm pudding, she baked a Steamed Strawberry Pudding, a tasty, spongey treat that also includes almonds, lime, and cardamom for what I imagine would be a great compliment to the strawberries. This was topped off with a creamy vanilla custard sauce and looks like the kind of dessert that would just make you feel great.|
|Helen (Charleston, SC, USA) of Tartelette recounts her fickle ways with food as a child (I was worse, I promise…I’ll save those stories for another day) and her never-ending love affair with cream puffs and all things choux. And so for this event, she baked Choux A La Fraise, cream puffs filled with strawberries and Grand Marnier Mousseline cream. They also go by “Strawberry Shortcakes crack” and “Zee Strawberry Cream Puff,” but I think all I could call them is amazing. If those were left unattended around me, I doubt I’d leave any behind.|
|Zlamushka (Sweden) of Zlamushka’s Spicy Kitchen prepared two smoothies, the star seducer: a Strawberry Smoothie. This is another great use for frozen strawberries, so get them while you can and freeze them for another day for a healthy and refreshing drink. This smoothie contains strawbrries, banana, honey, among other things. I used to live on smoothies in the summer time, drinking far too much, but nothing wrong with having a lot of fruit, right? Its the spiked smoothies you have to worry about|
Tina (Elkhart, IN, USA) from Sweet Designs made two delicious desserts.
First, she baked a Strawberry Crumb Tart. This tart has a cream cheese based crust, a macerated strawberry filling, and a sweet, oatmeal crumble topping. This was meant for coworkers but never left the house, and can you blame her?
Next, still with many berries to spare, she decided to try something different and the title really caught my eye: Stuffed Roasted Vanilla Strawberries. The strawberries are hulled, hollowed, and stuffed with butter, chocolate, sugar, zest, and vanilla, among other great flavors and briefly roasted, with the juices further reduced to a thick syrup. The results sound like a very successful experiment.
Aran (FL, USA) at Cannelle Et Vanille also prepared two desserts.
First, a throwback to one of her favorite desserts, she baked a Buttermilk Panna Cotta with Strawberry Salad. The panna cotta is creamy and has a slight tang, and this is topped off with some macerated strawberries with the curious contrasting flavor of black pepper. This admittedly sounds odd, but I’m intrigued and definitely intend to try it (its up there with many other “odd” pairs, such as chocolate & cayenne).
Next, she baked a Strawberry and Rhubarb Tart. These small tarts have sable breton as a base, orange mascarpone cream, strawberries arranged to frame the center, and poached rhubarb filling the center. Yum!
|Gemmi Rizzi (Trieste Italy) at Cook with love bake with heart wanted a strawberry shortcake, but wanted something different. So she baked a mouthwatering twist on the classic: a Shortcake Sandwich. This included a white chocolate spong cake, sandwiched around cream diplomat and strawberries, all packaged in white chocolate cutouts for what looks like a pretty amazing dessert sandwich.|
|Meeta (Weimar, Germany) at What’s For Lunch, Honey? enjoyed the last of her trip to Dubai and prepared an interpretation of a trifle for her family: Strawberries, Cream and Cake. For those unfamiliar with a trifle, cake, fruit, and custard are layered for a tasty dessert. Meeta macerated the strawberries with some limoncello and soaked the cake in lemon syrup, the cream being a mix of both cream and cream cheese, and all in all, the mix of sweet, tart, creamy, and airy all sound like a great treat for a warm day in good company.|
|Priya (Sunnyvale, CA, USA) at 365 Days of Pure Vegetarian has some tips about handling these fragiles berries (its a shame thath they have such a short shelf-life), and with those in mind, she provides a dessert that is delightfully quick to prepare: Instant Strawberry Cheesecake. These cheesecakes are single-serve, mini-cakes in a graham cracker crustm filled with a whipped mix of cream cheese, sour cream, and strawberries. With a brief trip to the fridge, this is a great dessert to put together in a pinch and looks great.|
|Lysy (Warwickshire, UK) at Munchkin Mail baked a family favorite: Strawberry and cinnamon tortelettes. These are such a hit in the family, that they’re even requested in lieu of birthday cakes. They have flavors like almond and cinnamon in this fluffy cake with a layer of diced strawberries in the middle. They look like a very tasty treat and I could see why they’d be so popular!|
|Mobula (Islas Canarias, Spain) at Delicias y Tentaciones baked a Tarta de Fresas y Queso Mascarpone. This tart has a whipped mascarpone filling with strawberry jam worked in and is artfully decorated with strawberries.|
|Jeff Shively (IN, USA) at Culinary Disater did the unthinkable: he baked! Jeff is a master of all things pork and has a great aversion to baking, so be absolutely sure to give him a hard time and go tell him what a great job he did baking this Strawberry Swirl White Chocolate Cheesecake! The cheesecake has a crushed graham cracker crust and the cream cheese filling has melted white chocolate and strawberry puree artfully swirled in just prior to baking to give a very nice, marbellized appearance to each slice.|
|Alexandra (NY, USA) at Addicted Sweet Tooth has beautiful strawberries abound…until she finally needed them! She decided to try something new: Strawberry Bruschetta. This involves a toasted baguette, butter, and some broiled, macerated strawberries on top. I could eat baguettes from sun up to sun down, and this sounds great to me–having a nice crunchy bread to sop up the errant strawberry juices would be great finger food.|
Susan (Gulf Coast, FL, USA) at Sticky, Gooey, Creamy, Chewy had a frustrating time finding the peace and quiet to make this Seductive Strawberry-Banana Trifle, and despite the many complications and interferences, she did a fantastic job! The trifle is rich, creamy, and “laden with juicy, ripe and sweet strawberries” with a delicious, home-made banana pudding mixed in (and go check out the secret ingredient in the pudding!). The cake was leftover from the last Daring Baker’s challenge, but any angel food or pound cake will do. Looks like quite a dessert!
Susan also wanted to but didn’t submit her Strawberry Shortcake, but it certainly looks mouthwatering, so I see no reason not to!
|Kellypea (Southern CA, USA) at Sass & Veracity recounts picking strawberries from…somewhere…as a child and enjoying the lucious taste of perfect, freshly picked strawberries. Today, she baked Strawberry Dream Cupcakes, following teo different methods to decide whether fresh or frozen strawberries made for a tastier cupcake base, all of which look delicious. The final product was topped with a very attractively applied strawberry buttercream frosting. These are my kind of cupcakes! Kellypea, feel free to keep experimenting, I’ll handle the leftovers!|
|Kiriel (Geneva, Switzerland) at The Papillon Pantry baked a Red Fruit Crumble. This contains a mix of apples, rhubarb, and strawberries, all topped off with a sweet, oat crumble top and baked just long enough to leave the inside juicy and tempting with the top crisp and delicious.|
|Pablo (AZ, USA) at Food from Pablo has an affinity for burritos, and he still managed to stick to that with strawberries as the theme with his Churracos Fresa con Creme Anglaise. He made a taco shell from churro batter and filled the taco with a strawberry and creme anglaise filling. This looks a hell of a lot better than any churros I had as a kid!|
Barbara (CT, USA) (my mom) included two entries. First, she baked a Strawberry Supreme Chocolate Chip Cheesecake, seated in a graham cracker crust and filled with cream cheese, sour cream, and topped off with chocolate chips and strawberries. Yum!
Then, always a fan of pancakes on the weekends, she whipped up a Strawberry Compote to go with the Sunday morning whole wheat pancakes. Another great candidate for freezing and enjoying strawberries past the season.
||And finally, bringing in the caboose:
Mike (FL, USA) of Mike’s Table (me!) prepared a handful of desserts. And if you think I went overboard, I’ve got more that will be posted in the coming weeks. Strawberries put a spell on me, what can I say?
I started with the first thing that comes to mind when I have strawberries: Strawberry Shortcake. This was a flaky scone, split open and covered in macerated strawberries and freshly whipped creme chantilly.
Next, I made Strawberry White Chocolate Mousse–light, fluffy, and sweet, this is a summery dessert that ends the meal without leaving you feeling like you ate too much.
I wanted to use balsamic vinegar in a dessert, so I macerated some strawberries and used it to create a very rich Balsamic Strawberry Ice Cream, flecked with small strawberry chunks.
I love pies, and my new favorite pie (a classic that’s new to me): Strawberry Rhubarb Pie. This pie is a combination of sweet and tart that elevates the flavors of both strawberry and rhubarb to something I think is really special.
And sadly, not all of these desserts were a success. The Strawberry Swiss Roll had great potential and sure tasted great, but I didn’t quite get the “Roll” part of “Swiss Roll” very well (to put it nicely). This was a combination of sponge cake, pastry cream, and strawberries–sweet, rich, and unrolled.
I sincerely hope I didn’t, but if I missed any of your entries, please let me know in the comments below and I’ll get it posted ASAP. My email account quite helpfully marked nearly every single entry as spam, so I’ve been doing my best to scan through that on a daily basis, but you know how that goes.