The strawberries are particularly good this summer – or maybe it’s just because I’ve been enjoying them as I watched a fabulous Wimbledon these last few weeks. Did you sob like a baby when Murray lost to Federer on Sunday? I did! Not that I don’t usually love Federer - and hats off to him for his seventh Championship – but being British we all went mad over having a Brit in the final. I’m really missing my daily tennis fix. Now that the Jubilee has come and gone and Wimbledon is over there are no more excuses for strawberries and cream, cucumber sandwiches, Pimms and cream teas – boo hoo! Can’t wait for the Olympics to kick off. London 2012 here we come.
I live in a small house with a small kitchen and because of this space is premium. I equate it to living on a boat – well okay it’s not quite that small but my galley kitchen has to be well organized to fit everything in. I can’t have lots and lots of bulky kitchen appliances because I just don’t have cupboards to house them in. So I was especially pleased when I was given a tiny gadget by my friend John in New York – it’s a plastic strawberry huller – is that a word? It is now! The little white handled huller is perhaps 3 strawberries long and is so small it risks being lost in a drawer. It makes hulling strawberries super fast and you don’t lose a lot of ripe flesh, which is inevitably what happens when I use a pairing knife to slice off the green tops.
This summer I did treat myself to a new gadget, it’s an ice cream maker that attaches to the KitchenAid stand mixer. I have coveted an ice cream maker for years and finally gave in. I’m so pleased that I did because with the weather pushing triple digits we all could use some ice cream. My go to healthy recipe for ice cream has to be the one ingredient banana ice cream recipe – but this strawberry water ice is close behind. I found the recipe in The Kitchen Diaries: A Year in the Kitchen with Nigel Slater – but he doesn’t use enough strawberries and adds too much sugar for my taste, the yield is a little on the low side and much too sweet. Perhaps the strawberries are brixing higher in California ? So I’ve adapted the recipe – feel free to add more sugar if your strawberries aren’t sweet enough. The resulting smooth strawberry sorbet is refreshing and light – perfect for ice cream cones with the children or elegant enough for summer night dinner parties at the end of the meal.
Strawberry Water Ice
Adapted from Nigel Slater’s Kitchen Diaries
1/2 cup bakers sugar
1 lb ripe strawberries
juice of half a lemon
1. In a small saucepan over medium heat bring the water and the sugar to a boil. As soon as the sugar has dissolved remove from the heat and cool.
2. Rinse and hull the strawberries. Blend until smooth.
3. Add the lemon juice and then add the strawberries to the chilled sugar water.
4. Pour the mixture into the ice cream maker and mix until it has frozen. Place in a bowl in the freezer until ready to eat.