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STRAWBERRY RHUBARB TRIFLE

 

Ingredients for 8 servings:

1 pound fresh strawberries

2/3 cup sugar

3 tablespoons Grenadine

1 pound fresh rhubarb, rinsed and cut into 1" lengths

1 cup crème fraîche

2 packages Pepperidge Farm shortbread cookies

 

Directions:

Rinse and stem  the strawberries.  Quarter all but 8 berries.  Slice these, sprinkle with 1 tablespoon sugar and reserve in a bowl.

 

Combine the remaining sugar with 2/3 cup water and the Grenadine in a deep skillet and bring to a simmer, stirring to make sure the sugar dissolves.  Add the rhubarb pieces, cover and cook slowly for 5 minutes until the rhubarb is almost tender and whole.  Add the quartered strawberries and cook uncovered another 5 minutes until  the berries are soft but still hold their shape. Strain the mixture and reserve the fruit pieces in a bowl.  Return the juices to the skillet and reduce them to 3/4 cup over medium high heat.  Stir the reduction into the fruit and allow it to cool.

 

Seal the cookies in a plastic baggie and crush them with a rolling pin.  Divide the crumbs among eight glass serving bowls or over the bottom of a large serving bowl.  Spoon two-thirds of the cooled fruit mixture on top of the cookies.  Spread on a thin layer of crème fraîche.  Divide the remaining puree over the cheese and spread it to cover.  Garnish with the sliced berries.  Dab on a final teaspoon of cream.  Serve immediately or chill, covered tightly for several hours before serving.

 

HOMEMADE CRÈME FRAÎCHE

 

Stir 1 tablespoon buttermilk into 1 cup whipping cream (Dean's preferred) in a clean glass container.  Cover and allow this mixture to sit at room temperature until it thickens noticeably.  (This will take a few hours in warm weather and a day or more in cool conditions.)  Refrigerate when not using.  Will last for 1 month.