June 23, 2013

Deconstructed Strawberry "Tiramisu"

     Yes, that's right, readers.  What you see above is the beginnings of one rad dessert.  While pouring hot liquid onto fluffed Mascarpone cheese seems counter intuitive, I promise you only good things come of it.  Sugared strawberries (this is still high strawberry season. get on it, people!) milky-sweet Mascarpone, and the bitter edges of espresso all swirl into a creamy, sugary, delightful mess.  Thankfully it's easy enough to go back for seconds...or fourths.  Just don't expect to sleep for a month. 

Deconstructed Strawberry "Tiramisu"

Serves 1

8 good-looking Strawberries (plump, glossy, no green spots)
2 Tbs softened Mascarpone cheese
1 Tbs Sugar
1/4 c Espresso (or to taste)

  • Thoroughly wash strawberries, remove tops, and slice as desired into your heat resistant container of choice
  • Sprinkle with sugar and carefully toss until evenly coated
  • In a microwave safe dish heat the Mascarpone on medium power for about 15 seconds or until just softened.  Stir gently until creamy but not edging in on liquid.  Alternatively heating the Mascarpone slowly in a small sauce pot on the stove  works well, too.
  • Brew or heat your espresso. ( i use a stovetop espresso maker. however, instant espresso is easily obtainable these days.  lacking both of these things, a strongly brewed dark roast coffee is an acceptable substitute.)
  • While your espresso is preparing top the sugared strawberries with the softened Mascarpone.
  • Gently pour the hot espresso over the mascarpone.  Use as much or as little as you desire.  
  • Try not to dissolve the cheese entirely.  I find part of the appeal of this dessert is getting a spoonful of berry, cheese, and espresso all in one go.  Bitter-sweet.  Invigorating.  Heady. 
    Also, the variations on this "Tiramisu" are endless.  I'm curious to find out what booze soaked, alternative ingredients, etc. versions you all come up with.  Share away, dear readers!
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June 12, 2013

Avalanche Cheese Company: Lamborn Bloomer

     The Avalanche Cheese Company has become something of a summer time darling around The Board and Wire.  Made locally to me in Basalt, Colorado, cheese can't get any fresher than this.  Well, unless it's aged on purpose, you get the idea.  My current obsession now that June is fully upon us is the Avalanche Lamborn Bloomer.  

    Those lady goats grazing on the Western Slope in Paonia are getting the best of the spring grasses and flora.  As a result the milk produced is rich in flavor and nutrients.  Making it ideal for creating bloomy rinded, milky, fresh cheese.  Hence, the Lamborn Bloomer.  
    Based on the Robiola style cheese of Italy it oozes out of its light, snappy rind.  Lactic and creamy at first bite it blossoms into floral and fresh-mowed grass.  Finishing gently with subtle flavors of citrus and yogurt.  Best served with seasonal fruit (right now, strawberries, get 'em while they're good) and slices of soft french bread (not crackers. do yourself a favor on this one.). 
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