Today's guest post comes from the beautiful Pippa aka the Intolerant Gourmet. Pippa and I became friends because of our blogs and discovered our very similar dietary restrictions. Even though she doesn't live in London, we meet up occasionally, the first couple of times at the sainsbury's free-from dinner parties where we made some allergy-friendly food with other bloggers. Be sure to pick up a copy of Pippa's book, the intolerant gourmet, when it comes out in February! Until then, I hope you'll enjoy her recipe for a take on a classic english dessert: strawberry fool.
The English strawberry season is short and sweet and it having come early this year means that it’s never too soon to pick up a gloriously ripe punnet. If pushed I would have to say that the best way to eat strawberries is as nature intended: picked ripe and juicy from the plant and popped into your mouth directly. No messing about, no fuss and no preparation either!
Towards the latter half of the season, the sweetness of each strawberry can begin to wane. The trick with these latecomers is to sweeten them with a little sugar and combine them. Strawberry Pie, Strawberry Ice Cream and Strawberry Shortcake all come to mind, but my current favourite is this Strawberry Fool. Made thick and creamy by blending cashew nuts with rice milk and vanilla, a freshly made strawberry puree is folded through and studded with a handful of sliced berries. It’s a wonderful summer pudding, just light enough to suit the season but sweet enough to sate. Serve in vintage glasses or small glass ramekins for best effect.
If you don’t want to serve this immediately then cover it tightly with clingfilm and leave in the fridge to chill. If kept this way it can last for up to 3 days.
For the strawberry Puree
100g golden icing sugar
A large punnet of strawberries (keeping a handful of the berries aside)
For the vanilla cream
200g raw cashew nuts
150ml – 200ml rice milk
1 tsp agave syrup
¼ tsp vanilla extract
The seeds from 1 vanilla pod
Place the cashew nuts, agave syrup, vanilla extract and seeds and the minimum quantity of rice milk into a high powered blender and blitz until completely smooth, thick and creamy, adding the extra rice milk, bit by bit, if you need it to help the process. Spoon the cream into a mixing bowl and set aside.
Next, hull the strawberries and then place with the icing sugar into the blender (having washed it first!) and blitz until you have a smooth puree. Pass the puree through a fine sieve, discarding the seeds.
Gently fold the strawberry puree into the vanilla cream until you have a light strawberry ripple. Slice the remaining strawberries into halves or quarters, depending on their size and fold into the fool. Spoon into glasses or bowls and then serve.