This has to be one of my favorite desserts, hands down! I discovered it one day while watching Take Home Chef on TLC. Remember that show girls? The one with the hunky Chef Curtis Stone *swoon* ambushing women in the grocery store and then going home with them to prepare a gourmet meal for whoever they were cooking for that night? I swear I used to make sure my hair and make up were done every time I went to the store those days, just in case. Alas, no hottie chef for me *sigh* but I did find some really good recipes! I mean, how can you go wrong with strawberries and champagne? Right?
This is is a very elegant dessert. It is great for dinner parties or for that special dinner for two. But I will tell you that I have craved this so much that I have made it just for me, and whoever might be lucky enough to stumble upon the leftovers. Very not elegant at those times. Me, hair in pony tail, sweats, no make up, mowing down a huge bowl of this stuff. Not an attractive scene I know, but man oh man it was good!
I did have a little kitchen "mishap" the first time I made this though. So you can learn from my explosion errrr mistake. I boiled the strawberries in the champagne, as the recipe calls for, then placed them in a bowl, juice and all. You need to chill them before you can assemble the dish. Sooooo me being the braniac that I can be at times, placed the bowl in the fridge. A couple hours later I come back and opened the refrigerator door. I swear it looked like Freddy Kruger had murdered someone in my fridge. There was sauce and strawberryshrapnel everywhere! I didn't know whether to grab a mop or call CSI!! I ended up having to take everything out of my fridge and deep clean it. It had even seeped into my freezer!! YIKES! I will never make that mistake again I can tell you that!
Champagne Poached Strawberries with Mascarpone
2 1/2 cups Prosecco (regular champagne can be used, I just prefer Prosecco)
1/4 cup sugar
1 pound fresh strawberries, green caps removed
4 ounces crème fraîche
4 ounces marscapone cheese
Fresh mint leaves
Combine the champagne and 1/4 cup of sugar in a medium saucepan. Bring the champagne to a boil over medium-high heat. Place the strawberries in a medium bowl.
Once the champagne has come to a boil, pour it over the strawberries ensuring the strawberries are covered completely. Allow the champagne to cool then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. The strawberries will keep up to 2 days in the refrigerator.
In a small bowl, whisk the crème fraîche, mascarpone and remaining 3 tablespoons of sugar to blend. Scoop the crème fraîche mixture in the center of 4 bowls. Place the strawberries around the outside of the crème fraîche mixture. Pour a little of the champagne juice into each bowl. Garish with mint leaves.
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