Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Frozen Strawberry-Grand Marnier Mousse

Well, friends…it’s only a few days before we leave for Chicago, and I’ve got a huge container of organic strawberries in the fridge that I need to use before we leave! What’s a girl to do? Well, if she’s a resourceful food blogger, she comes up with a fantastic recipe to showcase these beauties! My criteria was pretty clear: the recipe had to be simple…and it needed to be something refreshing to help us deal with this crazy Texas heat. I went to one of my “go to” recipe resources, Cooking Light's website, to see what ideas they might have. As usual, I found just what I was looking for after a few minutes of looking: a simple frozen strawberry mousse. 

Only a handful of ingredients and a few minutes are needed to make this dessert, which is perfect for my busy week! Of course, I tweaked the recipe a bit…but what else is new? Rather than completely puree the strawberries, I left them just a bit chunky so there would be little bits of strawberry in the mousse. I used French Vanilla Cool Whip – a seasonal flavor – to add a hint of a vanilla in the background…and I couldn’t resist adding some Grand Marnier since I LOVE the way it pairs with strawberries. This dessert comes together in about 15 minutes, then it goes in the freezer for a couple of hours while you attend to other things…like, say, packing a suitcase? It doesn’t freeze solid…it’s totally spoonable and delicious! I topped each serving of mousse with half of a large strawberry…eye appeal is important too, yes?

Frozen Strawberry-Grand Marnier Mousse
adapted from Cooking Light

Step 1:  Add 2 cups chopped strawberries, 1/3 cup superfine sugar, and 1/4 cup Grand Marnier to a food processor. Pulse until the strawberries are just short of pureed...leave some little bits of strawberry for flavor and texture.

Step 2:  Pour the strawberry mixture into a mixing bowl. Add 1/2 cup light sour cream and whisk until combined.

Step 3:  Add 1.5 cups of Cool Whip to the bowl. If you can find it, use the French Vanilla seasonal flavor. If you can't find that, add 1 tsp. vanilla extract in its place. Whisk the Cool Whip well to totally incorporate it into the mousse.

Step 4:  Spoon the mousse into four serving bowls. I used pretty stemmed wine glasses that are freezer safe, but ramekins or rocks glasses would also work nicely. Freeze for about two hours, then garnish with a strawberry half before serving.

This dessert is perfect for a warm summer evening…it’s so refreshing and light! To me, nothing says summer quite like strawberries. This recipe makes four individual servings of mousse. In my household, that means we have dessert left for tomorrow night too…which is perfect when you’re trying to take care of the millions of little details that come with preparing for a vacation. We leave on Friday afternoon, but I’ll be back with one more post on Thursday. I have a cookbook review and recipe feature to share, and I’ll announce the winner of my Sucre macaron giveaway. If you haven’t entered, you have until tomorrow evening at 1159 p.m.

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