On our recent jaunt to NYC, Hubs and I took a day trip to East Hampton, a beautiful little seaside village along Long Island’s southern coast. East Hampton is a very la-tee-da town, with Lamborghinis on every corner, gold-plated fire hydrants and swimming pools filled with dollar bills instead of water. It’s also home to a handful of incognito celebs, including my favorite New York foodie, the faaabulous Ina Garten.
Leaving the bustle of Manhattan behind, we cozied into our train seats and spent the next three hours gazing out the window, sharing ear buds to listen to Bill Maher, chatting with a jolly Montauker about trains and dentists, and desperately searching for the bathroom (note to self: always carry emergency toilet paper.) Around noon, we stumbled off the train with our knapsacks, bathing suits, makeshift map and empty itinerary. “Sooo… What is there to do here?”, Hubs asked. “Uuuhhh…”, I stalled, “Walk in the direction everyone else is walking?” Well, there’s a good start.
Before making our way down to the town beach, we stumbled upon Mulford Farm, an English colonial farmstead dating back to 1680. After our lovely guide, Colette, gave us a tour of the house and the garden, she inquired about our visit to East Hampton. I told her of our curiosity about the town and my girl crush on Ina Garten. “Oh, Ina?”, Colette said nonchalantly, “she lives right over there”, as she pointed to a beautiful wood shingled estate on the edge of the farm’s property. My heart skipped a beat and my eyes welled up. Hello, serendipity. I love you.
As much as I wanted to run through the farm’s meadow yelling, “INA, IT’S ME! GET OUT THE POMEGRANITE COSMOS, IT’S TIME FOR A COCKTAAAIL!”, I kept my cool and merely got my picture close to Ina’s back yard. I left Mulford Farm beaming, and we spent the rest of the day lounging on the beach, scouting for celebs, snacking on treats from a lemonade stand (even the lemonade is fancy in East Hampton!), drooling over the scenery and wondering how we can get our lawn to look like that… Oh, right: a metric ton of money.
On the train ride back to the city, I flipped through Food Network’s latest magazine I’d bought at the newsstand. Among the other delicious recipes, lo and behold, was Ina’s recipe for blueberry fools: a super-easy summer dessert of whipped cream folded with a fresh berry sauce, topped with even more sauce, even more berries and a crumbly shortbread cookie to boot. Like Ina says: “How easy is thaaat?”
The long 4th of July weekend gave me the perfect opportunity to put the recipe to the test. Bestie Bev’s (bevcooks.com) in-laws were hosting a shindig, potluck style; I brought the dessert, while Hubs focused on what he does best: getting people completely tanked. He brought a root beer float shot that will probably go down in history as the “shot felt ‘round the world”. Ask your friends. They’ve probably heard about it by now.
The fools came together with a minimal amount of preparation and effort. In usual Flyer Foodie style, I changed up the recipe by adding peaches and other berries, like raspberries and strawberries. I made the sauce a day before hand, just so it’d have plenty of time to cool in the fridge before folding it into delicate whipped cream. As a topper, I added my personal fave, a chunk of Walkers Shortbread. The sauce was the perfect balance of sweet and fruity, and the cream… well, I don’t even have to go there. Whipped cream = ‘nuff said. Take these to your next party and watch them swarm. And don’t forget to pop your collar. Enjoy!
Flyer Foodie on Facebook
Like what you just read? Then join me on Facebook for daily foodie inspiration and to share your meals and ideas with others! You can find me at facebook.com/flyerfoodie
1/2 c. each of raspberries, blueberries,
sliced strawberries and sliced peaches
1/4 c. granulated sugar
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp. grated lemon zest
1 1/2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 c. heavy cream
1 tsp. gelatin dissolved in 2 Tbs. cold water
2 Tbs. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla, divided
shortbread and additional fresh berries, for serving
To make the sauce: Heat 1 1/2 cups of the fruit mixture with the granulated sugar, salt, lemon zest, lemon juice and 1/2 teaspoon of the vanilla over medium heat until it comes to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the fruit begins to break down, about 8 minutes. Remove from the heat. You have the option here to leave the sauce as is or smooth it out in a blender or food processor. Allow the sauce to come to room temperature, or make it a day ahead and store it in the fridge.
Dissolve the gelatin in cold water and set it aside. Using cold utensils, beat the heavy cream on high until it barely begins to take shape. Add the gelatin, powdered sugar and the other 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, and beat on high until peaks form.
Gently fold all but 1/2 cup of the peachberry sauce into the whipped cream. Divide among glasses or bowls, and top with the remaining sauce. Serve with the shortbread and fresh berries.
* If the above slideshow doesn’t load, you can view all the photos from this recipe on Flickr.
Laura is a regular contributor for the Fayetteville Flyer. She was born and raised in Fayetteville. She is a self-proclaimed foodie and avid cook. For more of Laura’s contributions, see her Flyer Foodie author page. For more cooking, recipes, and other food-related inspiration, visit Flyer Foodie on Facebook.