Thursday, June 5, 2008

A Sweet Conclusion

We grilled out on Monday evening with friends. One of the two flank steaks we grilled was done perfectly, but the other was just slightly more "done" than I hoped for.

The eggplant and sweet potatoes we threw on the grill came out nicely. But everyone seemed to like the dessert I made best of all, even though it was a pretty low-fuss dessert.

Here's the recipe:

Bing Cherries with Cardamom Cream
(serves 4)

3 ginger snap cookies + half-a-dozen almonds
8 oz. of cream cheese, softened at room temp.
6 tablespoons of confectioner's sugar
1-1/4 cup of whipping cream
1-1/2 teaspoon of ground cardamom
2 cans (15 oz.) of Oregon brand pitted dark sweet Bing cherries

1. Place cookies and almonds in a food processor and process them 10 seconds or so until ground well, but before it becomes a powder. Set aside.

2. Drain the cherries, but reserve 2 tablespoons of the cherry juice.

3. Using a hand-mixer, beat the confectioner's sugar into the cream cheese, slowly adding 1 cup of the whipping cream as you do so. (Set aside the remaining 1/4 cup of whipping cream.) Add the cardamom. Beat cream mixture until smooth. Add the cherry juice and beat until juice is incorporated into the cream.

4. Add additional whipping cream to lighten the texture of the cream.

5. Place a cluster of cherries in the bottom of 4 serving bowls. Top with a small portion of the cardamom cream. Place several more cherries atop the cream layer, then add another layer of the cream.

6. Sprinkle the ginger snap-almond crumbles atop each bowl and serve.

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