Summer Berry Gratin
This is a beautiful way of using them during berry season. Its a simple recipe which I adapted for use from the cookbook entitled Supper For a Song, by Tamasin Day-Lewis. I love her recipes. They are always well written and they always turn out. I know she is largely unknown in North America, but she is a great cook and writer.
This is delicious. Making the sabayon is a bit faffy, but well worth any effort taken. The berries are not cooked through, so they keep a lot of their fresh flavour and texture. The gratin mixture is unctously delicious. I could make a meal of that alone. You can make that part a day ahead if you wish, which makes it actually quite a great last minute dessert when the berries are ripe and the bees are a buzzing.
For the Sabayon:
4 large free range egg yolks
120g golden caster sugar (10 TBS)
few drops vanilla extract
the juice of one lemon
100ml double cream (7 TBS, scant 1/2 cup)
For the Fruit:
300g fresh strawberries, washed and hulled (3 cups, halved if large)
300g fresh raspberries, picked over and cleaned (3 cups)
100g fresh blueberries, picked over and cleaned (1 cup)
1 TBS caster sugar, or to taste
2 TBS framboise of Grand Marnier
To make the sabayon, put the egg yolks, sugar, vanilla and lemon juice in the top of a double boiler and set over a pan of simmering water. Make sure the bottom of the double boiler isn’t touching the water. (Alternately you can use a large heat proof bowl that will fit over top of your saucepan of simmering water without falling in.) Using an electric whisk, whisk on medium high speed until th mixture has doubled in volume and thickened so that the mixture leaves a trail over top when you lift the beaters out of the pan. Remove to the countertop and place onto a kitchen towel to keep the pan from moving about. Continue to whisk with the electric whisk until the mixture is completely cold.
Using clean beaters, whisk the cream just to the point where it forms very soft folds. You want it slack, and not beaten stiff. It won’t fold into the other mixture properly if you over beat it. Gently fold the cream into the cold cooked mixture. At this point you can continue on to finish the recipe or put it in a covered dish in the refrigerator overnight. (If you are doing it overnight, then don’t macerate the berries until about half an hour or so before you want to make the dessert.)
When you are ready to serve the dish, heat the grill/broiler to the highest it will go. Put the berries into a shallow gratin dish. Spoon the sabayon over top evenly. Place under the heated grill for about a minute until the surface is just golden brown. Serve immediately!