Chosen Bites: Elegant and effortless

Sometimes, simple is the most sophisticated.

June 7, 2012 10:48
2 minute read.

Sabayon. (photo credit: Courtesey)


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For summer desserts, I am looking for fresh flavors, bright colors and less time in the kitchen. A sabayon is a French sauce (zabaglione for the Italian version) made of eggs, sugar and wine that is whisked to a frothy, creamy consistency. It is elegant spooned over fresh fruit or simple pound cake. I like to pile the fruit into a beautiful wine glass and layer the fruit and sabayon. Serve immediately or chill for several hours.

Strawberries with Sabayon

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Serves 6-8

For the berries

3 pints of fresh strawberries or favorite fruit, stemmed, cleaned and dried

3 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon lemon juice

Quarter the berries and place in a large bowl. Toss with sugar and lemon juice and allow to macerate for one hour.

For the sabayon

6 egg yolks

1 cup sweet white wine or rose, or leftover Prosecco or champagne

1/3 cup sugar, plus more to taste

1 vanilla bean, scraped

Drops of freshly squeezed lemon juice

1. Have a large bowl that can accommodate the sabayon bowl, partially filled with ice, standing by.

2. Bring a saucepan of water to a simmer. Be sure that a stainless-steel mixing bowl can fit over it and not touch the water or you will have scrambled eggs!

3. Whisk to blend the yolks, wine, sugar and scraped vanilla bean in a stainless-steel bowl. Rest the bowl in the saucepan over hot water. Whisk constantly for 5 minutes or more to cook the sauce, until it has the consistency of lightly whipped cream. Be sure to whisk to the bottom of the bowl constantly with the whisk so that the eggs do not scramble, and adjust the heat as needed.

4. Taste the sauce — and whisk drops of lemon juice or more sugar if you want. When thick, foamy, and tripled in volume, remove from heat. Place the bowl into the bowl with ice and continue whisking for a few minutes until the sabayon has cooled down.

5. Divide the berries and their juices into dessert cups. Spoon the cooled sabayon over the berries and serve. Garnish with chopped nuts, fresh mint, whipped cream for a dairy dessert.

Chef Laura Frankel is Executive Chef for Spertus Kosher Catering and author of Jewish Cooking for All Seasons, and Jewish Slow Cooker Recipes.

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