The Sun enters the sign of Cancer on the Midsummer Solstice – the height of Strawberry season. For me, there is nothing that epitomizes the delight of this time of the year better than strawberries do. The crisp, yet sweet, yet succulent, squishy, juicy sensual delight is perfection in a berry. And thus I proudly present…. (drum roll)
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
I know, Midsummer has long gone, but we are still in the midst of summer and, what’s more, it is still strawberry season. And that is all that matters for this recipe.
Cancer is ruled by the Moon, the archetypal mother. She stands for nurture and nourishment. Cancerians often have a thing about food and express their love through nourishing and nurturing their loved ones. They may not necessarily aspire to master gourmet cuisine, but they make the best down-home comfort food.
This Strawberry dessert is the ultimate summer comfort food. One could take a bath in it.
- 500 g Fresh Strawberries
- 3 tbsp Brown Sugar
- 500g Quark or fromage frais (low fat)
- 1/2 Lemon
- Elderflower Syrup
- 200 ml Whipped Cream
- Vanilla sugar
Notes: ‘Quark’ is a very simple kind of farmer’s cheese that is common in Scandinavia and German-speaking countries. The beauty of it is, it is incredibly versatile and very low in fat. It can be substituted with ricotta or cream fresh, although those options of course are not so low in calories.
It is quite easy to make your own, though. Just take fresh milk (not UHT milk) and add some buttermilk to it. Leave it for a couple of days and strain through a cheesecloth. The longer you let it drip the drier it becomes. Normally, Quark is fairly firm.
Another way to substitute is to use medium-soft tofu which is creamed with the aid of a hand blender. If you want to make the whole thing vegan you can use chickpea water as a substitute for the whipped cream. (I haven’t tried that, which is why I won’t give a recipe here.)
Clean the strawberries and cut them into small pieces.
Place them into a bowl and sprinkle with the sugar.
Set aside and let the sugar draw some juice, for at least 20 minutes
Stir the lemon into the Quark/Fromage frais and blend until smooth using a whisk
Add Elderflower Syrup to taste
When the strawberries have released some juices add them to the quark.
Stir until all the berries and the juice are well incorporated
Whip the cream with the vanilla sugar until it forms soft peaks. Fold it into the Quark mixture.
And that is all there is to it. It sounds simple, and it is, but believe me, it is utterly divine!