It’s summer, and the floodgates of produce have opened! Who can resist the sweetness and freshness of berries, which are now at their peak of perfection? We for sure cannot. Thankfully, berries have been on sale these past few weeks, which means that we’ve been eating berries – lots and lots of them. I’ve also made two batches of raspberry jam (the recipe can be found here) and I am about to make a third. The abundance of fresh berries is one of the reasons I love summer so much. If only I had more time to cook, bake and generally experiment in the kitchen…
In this dessert I’ve used my beloved berries to visually pay homage to Flag Day, which is today. This sweet dish requires little preparation, and the result is deliciously simple and likely to satisfy the expectations of both adults and children. By the way, ricotta cheese is one of our daughter’s favorite cheeses (she’s a cheeseaholic, just like her mom 🙂 ).
I have used 1/4 cup powdered sugar, but you can adjust the quantity, depending on the sweetness of your berries. Use chopped nuts for a crunchy bite.
Next time I make this dessert I will use the fresh juice of a guava instead of vanilla extract. I’ll try it and I’ll report back.
Handful of strawberries, raspberries and blueberries
1/2 lb ricotta cheese
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
4fl oz heavy whipping cream (in other words, half of a small container)
Aerosol whipped cream
Handful roasted and chopped walnuts, for decoration (optional)
Wash the berries, then pat dry. Slice the strawberries lengthwise.
In a bowl, combine the ricotta with the powdered sugar and the vanilla extract. Mix well until smooth and creamy. Add the heavy whipping cream and mix some more with a spoon, until the mixture is homogeneous.
Build layer upon layer of flavor by alternating the ricotta & cream mixture with the whipped cream and the fruits. Start off with ricotta & cream, then add whipped cream, blueberries, raspberries and strawberries (in this order), then continue with another layer of ricotta & cream, and so on.
Finish off with whipped cream and lots of berries (The more, the merrier!). Serve chilled.
If you want, you can sprinkle chopped walnuts on top of the dessert to give it an extra layer of texture and flavor.
You can store the leftover ricotta & cream mixture in the refrigerator for 1-2 days max. The mixture will thicken and it will be delicious to eat on its own. I always try to avoid throwing food away, so I think I will use it tomorrow to make cheese-filled crêpes, a dessert which is always a winner with my husband. I might also add some fresh berries to the mix, to make the crêpes light, joyful and summery.
Indeed, celebrating summer has never been tastier 🙂