Monday, June 20, 2011

Frozen Berries with Hot White Chocolate Sauce

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I am disgruntled to be sitting at my computer back to wearing sweatshirts. It has been chilly and rainy here lately and being that our snow is still melting, I am sick of it! Alright, I got that off my chest so I think I can move on. Frozen berries with hot white chocolate sauce is the perfect dessert to serve to a crowd. Why you ask? I'll tell you. The instructions are as follows: 1) buy fresh berries (chances are they will be on sale since they are in season) 2) freeze them 3) melt chocolate, cream and vanilla together 4) pour hot sauce over frozen berries 5) serve. Oooooh's and awwww's all around.

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The berries are frozen but when you pour that hot sauce over, it defrosts them just enough. What you are left with is semi-frozen chunks of cold fruit draped in sweet, creamy hot sauce. It's cold, it's hot, you are confused, and enjoying every minute of it. It's funny how many people upon being served this dessert will furrow their brow and say "Wait, the berries are frozen?" Crazy host. Crazy genius, superstar host.

I don't recommend buying frozen berries to begin with. The whole point is to have fresh seasonal berries. Plus, when you buy a carton of berries and freeze them on a sheet pan as per the instructions in this recipe, you don't get berries that have been stuck and frozen together in clumps, like so often happens with the pre-bagged kind. Freezing your own berries makes for much prettier presentation. Don't like white chocolate? Semi-sweet chocolate would work too.

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Frozen Berries with Hot White Chocolate Sauce
adapted from Ina Garten

serves 8-10

  • 1 1/4 pounds good white chocolate coarsely chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 pounds frozen mixed berries or frozen raspberries

Directions

Combine the chocolate, heavy cream, and the vanilla in a heat-proof bowl and set it over a pan of simmering water until the chocolate melts.

About 5 minutes before serving, remove the berries from the freezer and place them on individual serving plates. Ladle the warm chocolate sauce over the berries and serve.


Note: You can freeze your own berries by placing the berries on a flat tray in a layer. When the berries are fully frozen, keep them a plastic bag in the freezer. Larger berries, such as strawberries, do not freeze well.


This recipe makes a lot of sauce. I didn't halve it because if you really are serving 10 people you will need that much sauce. If you are only serving 4-6 people, you can safely cut the recipe in half.
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*****I originally blogged about this in April 2010. I had no followers or pictures, however, I like what I said about this dessert and I wanted to keep the original post documented. Here it is...*****

This is the dessert I made for my Grandparents when I was out in California. It's one of my very favorites, especially in the Summertime because it's easy, light, but not too light, and satisfying. Basically, you just freeze seasonal berries (I like lots of raspberries mixed with blueberries and blackberries) on a sheet pan so they don't stick together. When they are frozen you just put them down in a pile in a pretty, shallow glass bowl and ladle a scrumptious hot white chocolate sauce over them. The hot-ness from the sauce will defrost your berries halfway making them the perfect texture for eating.

Frozen Berries with Hot White Chocolate Sauce
adapted from Ina Garten

1/2 pound plus 2 tablespoons good white chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
1 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
2 1/4 pounds mixed berries, or raspberries, frozen on a cookie sheet

Combine chocolate, heavy cream, and the vanilla in a heat proof bowl and set it over a pan of simmering water until the chocolate melts (Or just combine it in a saucepan and warm it over low heat until melted, stiring occasionally)

About 5 minutes before serving, remove the berries from the freezer and place them on individual serving plates or bowls. Ladle the warm chocolate sauce over the berries and serve immediatly.

serves 6

I usually, instead of dealing with pounds, figure a carton of berries per person and combine them all. But, you could serve more generous portions if you wish as no one will complain. I also combine the chocolate (sometimes I buy good quality chips and skip the chopping step, but don't do this with less expensive chips becuase they have too many stabilizers and it will not melt well) cream and vanilla in a small saucepan and put it over very low heat just as I am about to sit down to dinner. It is usually almost ready and melted when we are done. Also, if you don't care for white chocolate, use bittersweet instead, it would be delicious. Although, the sauce does not primarily taste of white chocolate.

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