Saturday, July 21, 2012

Aunt Rose's Strawberry Ice Cream Topping

Growing up my mother and aunt took me with them on strawberry picking expeditions each summer.  I'm sure I ate more than I returned to the basket, but no one seemed to complain.  We would start very early in the morning, before it got very hot.  We would often come home with just around one hundred quarts.  That's a lot of strawberries!  While some were served up just sliced with some sugar that day, the rest were prepared for the freezer and would be used to top Goshen Dairy vanilla ice cream, which is where my uncle worked (so ice cream was never in short supply.) 

No one seems to have thought to write down Aunt Rose's preparation technique, perhaps because it was so simple.  So over the years I've developed two basic methods that I use to replicate those delicious summer ice cream desserts that you could get from Aunt Rose all year long.  The first is a cooked recipe and the second is raw.  The raw recipe works well if you are making the topping for use in 24 hours.  The cooked version is best for making a large batch and freezing in smaller containers for use later in the season or year.

Non-Cooked Method
Cooked Strawberry Ice Cream Topping
2 pints strawberries, cleaned and stemmed
2/3 cup white sugar
2 teaspoon vanilla

Cut all of the strawberries in half.  Set 1/3 aside and place the other 2/3 in a saucepan over medium high heat.  Add the sugar and vanilla and cook, stirring occasionally, until sauce thickens, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. In a blender, puree about 1/3 of warm cooked strawberry sauce.  Add the pureed sauce back into remainder of the cooked berries.  Add the reserved raw berries to the warm sauce and stir in gently. Store in refrigerator or freeze a portion for later use.  To serve spoon over vanilla ice cream and top with whipped cream.

Note:  Martha Stewart has a similar recipe, although she suggests roasting them on a cookie sheet (300F for 1 hour 45 minutes).  Prior to baking she drizzles them with honey and tosses gently to coat.  The recipe works well and could be substituted if you are avoiding white sugar.

Non-Cooked Strawberry Ice Cream Topping
1 pint strawberries, cleaned and stemmed
1/4 cup white sugar (more if berries are not sweet)
2-3 Tablespoons strawberry vodka

Cut all of the strawberries in half and sprinkle with the strawberry vodka.  Add the sugar and stir gently to combine.  Let the berries sit in a bowl on your counter, covered, for 2-3 hours gently turning every 30 minutes.  Place 1/3 of the berry mixture into a blender and puree.  Pour mixture over the berries and stir to combine.  Spoon over vanilla ice cream and top with whipped cream.

1 comment:

  1. Gorgeous recipe, David. The cooked/raw combo must capture the heart of the berry!