I’m sure you’ve had berries with whipped cream, but have you ever had berries in whipped cream?
It’s as simple as taking one of my favorite ingredients, freeze dried berries, pulverizing them into a powder and then whipping them into fluffy pastel clouds of cream.
So simple. So dreamy. So good. So perfect for piling onto a slice of Ricotta Cake and then shoveling into your mouth mostly with your fingers even though there are forks right there.
I clearly made this with batch with all raspberries, but the recipe will work with any freeze dried berry (or other fruit) you like. Get colorful with it! Go pink with strawberries, indigo with blueberries, or maybe try the mixed berries I’ve been eyeing recently at Trader Joe’s! I don’t know what color they’d make exactly—some sort of purple—but I do know it would be delicious.
(Any) Berry Whipped Cream makes about 1 1/2 cups
~1/2 cup freeze dried berries of choice 1 cup heavy cream, very cold 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 3 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
Place freeze dried berries in a food processor and process until they are powder, about 45-60 seconds. Alternatively, place the berries in a sealed zip-top bag and crush well with a rolling pin or other heavy object.
Measure out 2 tablespoons of pulverized berry powder, and reserve any remaining powder for another use.
In a medium-large mixing bowl, combine heavy cream, vanilla, confectioner’s sugar, and pulverized berries. Use an electric mixer to whip cream until stiff peaks form. Do not over whip (but if you do, just add a little more cream).
Load whipped cream into a piping bag fitted with a tip or scoop with a spoon and use as desired.
Leftover Berry Whipped Cream should be covered and refrigerated. It’s pretty stable, but may need to be lightly re-whipped before serving.
If you’ve never had pavlova, your life summer dessert game might be about to change. This naturally gluten-free meringue cake has a crisp, glossy exterior and marshmallow-soft interior, and is a vehicle for all sorts of good things, including but not limited to whipped cream, lemon curd and fresh summer berries. It’s a perfect rustic-but-classy dessert to have in your warm weather recipe arsenal. I don’t have a roof deck or a backyard, but one day when I do, I’m going to have friends over for mocktails and pavlova all summer long, just because I can. In fact, my maternal grandparents’ backyard is the first place I ever remember eating pavlova.
You might be wondering “Is pavlova popular in North Texas?” The answer is a hard “no.” To tell you the truth, I don’t know how my grandma learned about it, aside from the part where she just *knew* how to throw together simple dinner party foods. If she ever told me, I’ve forgotten…probably because I was trying to get a whole bunch of fruit, whipped cream and meringue in my face as efficiently as possible. My best guess is our friends-who-are-family from Australia taught her about it during one of their visits.
So how did I go from eating pavlova exactly once during my Texan childhood to making it thirty-odd years later? Well, the answer is simple. I had leftover egg whites, a fresh jar of Lazy Lemon Curd, got a little over-ambitious with my berry purchasing, and I always have heavy cream. When life gives you those things, make Pavlova with Lemon Curd & Berries.
Like most things that rely whipped egg whites and sugar for structure, pavlova is incredibly simple to make. The most important step in the whole process is ensuring that your mixing bowl and mixer attachment are super clean and dry so that you end up with airy results and not sad egg white soup.
The actual work of making meringue is just gradually combining egg whites, salt, sugar, cornstarch, vanilla and vinegar while your mixer works overtime to create stiff peaks. After that, form your meringue into a cake on a parchment-lined sheet pan and bake it very low and slow before letting it cool completely in the oven.
Now, I have good news and bad news. The good news is that baked, cooled pavlova meringue can be made up to three days before you serve it. The bad news is that once you start piling toppings on it, your pavlova isn’t long for this world. Glossy, crisp, marshmallowy meringue is fleeting, so don’t assemble your pavlova until right before you want to serve it. But then, do it up!
Obviously, I went the lemon curd/whipped cream/fresh berries route here, but feel free to go wild with your pavlova toppings. Change the fruit to mango, pineapple, cherries or peaches! Grate on chocolate! Scatter toasted coconut over the top! Use key lime curd in place of lemon and sprinkle crushed graham crackers on there. Key Lime Pie-vlova, anyone?!
But back to the point, which is, as always, to take my recipe and make it yours. Like I said, your life summer dessert game might be about to change.
Pavlova with Lemon Curd & Berries makes one pavlova, about 8 servings
Pavlova: 1 cup granulated sugar 2 teaspoons cornstarch 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 1 teaspoon white or apple cider vinegar 4 large egg whites, room temperature 1/4 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
Whipped Cream: 1 cup heavy cream, very cold 2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar
For Assembly: 1 cup Lazy Lemon Curd or other lemon curd 2-3 cups fresh berries of choice (I used strawberries, raspberries & blueberries)
Preheat oven to 250F. Draw an 8-inch circle on a sheet of parchment big enough for a rimmed sheet pan. Turn the parchment over (so the drawn circle side is facing down) and place on the pan. Set aside.
In a small bowl, use a fork to whisk together sugar and cornstarch. Set aside.
In a separate very small bowl, combine vanilla and vinegar. Set aside.
Add egg whites and salt to a very clean, dry mixing bowl. Starting at the lowest setting and gradually ramping up to medium-high, use an electric mixer to beat egg whites until foamy (about 2-3 minutes). With the mixer running, add sugar-cornstarch mixture a tablespoon at a time until incorporated. Then add the vanilla-vinegar mixture. Turn the speed up to high and whip until stiff peaks form (about 5 minutes).
Turn the mixture (now a meringue) out onto the prepared baking sheet, using an offset spatula or the back of a spoon to gently spread it to the edges of the circle. Make it taller at the edges than the center so you have a logical place for the toppings.
Place pavlova in the oven and bake for 75 minutes (1:15) until puffed, glossy, and slightly cream-colored. Turn off the oven and wedge a wooden spoon in the door to keep it slightly ajar. Let the pavlova cool completely in the oven (a couple of hours or overnight).
If not using immediately, carefully remove the pavlova from the parchment and double wrap with plastic wrap. Keep at room temperature for up to three days.
Assemble the pavlova immediately before serving. If wrapped, gently remove and discard plastic wrap. Place pavlova on a serving plate.
Make whipped cream topping. In a medium-large mixing bowl, combine heavy cream and confectioner’s sugar. Use an electric mixer to whip cream until stiff peaks form.
Spread the top of the pavlova with lemon curd. Spoon/spread whipped cream over the top. Finish with berries of choice. Serve immediately.
I love an everyday cake, although I guess that’s technically a misnomer here. This blueberry beauty is a torte, which essentially means that it’s a cake made with little (or sometimes no) flour.So…I guess it is a cake? Not all cakes are tortes, but all tortes are cakes. So yes, Blueberry Torte is a cake. Glad we got that sorted.
(Sorry.)Anyway…this Blueberry Torte is easy peasy and so good, you’re going to want to make it all summer long. And you absolutely should! It’s got a soft center, slightly chewy edges, and is literally bursting with fresh blueberries—what’s not to love?!This is a spin on one of my favorite holiday desserts, Pear & Cranberry Torte. It’s so super delicious that I wanted to make a spring/summer appropriate version and, well, here we are.The recipe begins with a simple cake batter. You’ll find many of the usual suspects here (softened butter, flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, eggs), plus light brown sugar and the tiniest bit of lemon zest.One ingredient you won’t find? Milk. There’s none in this recipe, so the batter is pretty thick for a cake…er, torte. This lack of liquid is also what gives us the almost cookie-like edges. Yesssss. If you’re worrying about this leading to a dry product, never fear—this torte stays plenty moist thanks to the butter and eggs, small amount of flour, and two full cups (12 ounces!) of blueberries that are pressed into the top before baking. They soften and sink into the batter while the torte bakes and become jammy and fragrant and it is stupid good and why aren’t you actively walking to the kitchen right now???
(Sorry again.)Blueberry Torte doesn’t require any frosting or other flourishes and can be served up while it’s still warm. If, however, you want to jazz it up for a dinner party or you’re feeling fancy, you can give it a dusting of confectioner’s sugar, a dollop of whipped cream or a smattering of fresh blueberries. If you’re anything like me, you’ll need all three.Sorry, not sorry.
one 9-inch cake, about 8 servings
2 teaspoons fresh lemon zest (about 1 medium lemon)
1/2 cup granulated sugar + 1 tablespoon, for sprinkling
1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
12 ounces (about 2 cups) fresh blueberries
For serving (optional):
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a 9-inch springform pan. Set aside.
Combine lemon zest, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, and light brown sugar in a small bowl. Use your fingertips to rub the zest into the sugar to release the oils. Set aside.
In a small-medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to cream butter until very light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Beat in sugar mixture. Mix in eggs one at a time, followed by vanilla. With the mixer on low, mix in dry ingredients. Batter will be thick.
Spread batter into the prepared pan. Scatter blueberries over the top and lightly press them into the batter. Sprinkle the additional tablespoon of granulated sugar over the top. Bake 50-55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out with only a few moist crumbs. Let cake cool in the pan on a rack for 15 minutes before running a small, thin knife around the edge and releasing the springform.
Serve warm or room temperature with a dusting of confectioner’s sugar, whipped cream and/or fresh blueberries, if desired. Leftovers will keep covered in the refrigerator for a few days.
I love making crisps. They’re every bit as good as pie, but easier and much (!) quicker to make, and can be served warm with vanilla ice cream, so the time between the moment the craving strikes and the moment you dive in spoon-first is mercifully brief.What I’m trying to say is that you need more crisps in your life. *I* need more crisps in *my* life. There’s only one in my archives—a pear, ginger & chocolate concoction that you should absolutely make in the fall—and that is atrocious. Just awful. Especially considering there are so many delicious berries and rhubarb (!!!) available right this second.Berries and rhubarb that can only be improved with hints of ginger and orange and clusters of buttery, brown sugary oat & walnut dough scattered over the top and baked until…well…crisp.Sweet, tart, jammy, gorgeous, and seriously simple, this seasonal dessert can only be improved with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The way it melts into the spaces between the fruit and the crisp topping is just……well, I guess you’ll have to make the recipe and see for yourself.
Raspberry Rhubarb Crisp
makes one 8-inch dish, about 6 servings
2 cups diced fresh rhubarb (1/2-inch dice, about 4 stalks)
2 cups fresh raspberries (about 1.5 6-ounce containers)
1 tablespoon fresh orange zest
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
pinch of Kosher or sea salt
1/3 cup old-fashioned oats
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
1/3 cup chopped raw walnuts (optional)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
vanilla ice cream, optional
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease an 8-inch casserole dish with butter. Set aside.
In a medium-large mixing bowl, combine rhubarb and raspberries. Add orange zest, sugar, cornstarch, ground ginger, and salt, and stir to combine. Transfer to prepared baking dish.
Make the topping. In a medium mixing bowl, combine oats, flour, light brown sugar, ground ginger, salt, and chopped raw walnuts. Stir together with a fork. Add melted butter and stir until everything is saturated and clumps form. Scatter topping onto raspberry-rhubarb filling.
Bake 28-30 minutes, until topping is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Let cool 10 minutes before serving in bowls with vanilla ice cream, if desired.
Cover and refrigerate any leftovers for up to three days. Reheat before serving.
Every year, I look forward to all the berries that show up in the late spring and early summer. When I’m not eating them by the box, straight from the fridge, I’m tipping them into all sorts of baked goods and other warm-weather treats! There are loads of fresh berry-based recipes in my Recipe Index and there are at least a few more coming this summer, but I thought maybe you could use a little baking inspiration this weekend. Here are some of my “berry” favorites 🙂 Blueberry Muffins
Is there any berry-based treat more iconic than Blueberry Muffins?! My version of this classic recipe stays super moist and tender thanks to a combination of both melted butter and oil, as well as a cup of buttermilk in the batter. And that’s to say nothing of all the soft, jammy, bursting blueberries ❤ Blueberry Kolaches
And speaking of blueberries, they are the stunning centerpiece of these soft, buttery homemade kolaches. I formulated the base recipe over the winter to go with a homemade grapefruit curd filling, but I am totally over-the-moon for this summery fresh berry version. Raspberry Fudgsicles
Now, one for the days that it’s too hot to bake. I am all too familiar—the kitchen is the only un-air conditioned room of my apartment. Luckily, there is no need to heat up your home to make these vegan, sugar-free ice pops! These frozen treats are made with super-nutritious ingredients like avocado, coconut milk, and medjool dates, and flavored with cocoa (I recommend dutch process) and fresh raspberries. If you want to jazz them up even further, you could give them a dip in my Homemade Chocolate Shell! Brown Butter Strawberry Shortcakes
As far as I am concerned, these are the best strawberry shortcakes on the planet. You may feel otherwise, but rich, flaky brown butter biscuits, whipped cream, and macerated fresh strawberries are pretty difficult to argue with! Strawberry Rhubarb Galette
There’s a brief window every year where rhubarb and strawberries are both in season at the same time—I highly recommend you take advantage of it and make yourself a galette! This freeform pie is simple to make and wrapped up in a Whole Wheat Pie Dough that plays beautifully off these seasonal flavors. Blackberry Pie
Another thing that goes well with Whole Wheat Pie Dough? Fresh blackberries! I picked every berry in the pictured pie while in Maine last summer, but if you haven’t scheduled a late summer vacation in coastal New England, grocery store blackberries will work just as well 🙂 Red, White & Blueberry Cake
The Fourth of July is coming up in a few weeks and this berry-centric is a perfect centerpiece! Thin layers of white cake, whipped cream frosting, sliced strawberries, and blueberries make for a delicious, festive dessert.
Have you made any of these recipes? What do you like to make with fresh berries? Let me know on Instagram@e2bakesbrooklyn or in the comments!