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Strawberry with Balsamic and Cracked Black Pepper Fruit Leather ~ Gourmet Edition ~

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I was inspired to make this fruit leather by my Aged Balsamic and Strawberry Ice Cream.  Bob and I love aged balsamic vinegar and have found that there is a fine art in selecting a good one.  The quality of which you use will make all the difference in the end flavor in your recipes.  But I won’t go into the make-up of balsamic vinegar.  If you check out the ice cream link that I put here, you can read more about it there.

As tantalizing as the balsamic vinegar is, the star of this show is the strawberry.  I don’t know about you but when I come across bright ruby-red strawberries at the local grocer or farmers market I just can’t pass them up… in fact there really isn’t a reason to resist them.  To make sure you get  da’creme of da’crop you want to make sure you get ripe ones.

Select plump, firm, fully red berries.  A deep red color is one indicator of flavor, but strawberries actually continue to redden after being picked, even though they do not continue to get sweeter, so you can get some disappointing, but brightly colored strawberries, by relying on color alone.  Use your nose and smell them,  they should have a strong scent of strawberry when ripe.

We have all been trained in believing that bigger is better but in this case the small berries are often most flavorful. If you are lucky enough to find beautifully ripe strawberries be careful not to over-purchase as they tend to quickly mold when left at room temperature, and only last a couple of days in the refrigerator.  But if you are anything like me and can’t resist these luscious morsels, specially if you get a really good deal… you will end up with far to many than you could possibly consume fresh in time.  That being the case….FRUIT LEATHERS can be an answer to prayer.  Well, shoot, there are tons of things you could do with them but you landed on this here recipe and it entails using them in a fruit leather.

One last thing, until you are ready to make your leather DON’T wash the berries until you are ready to use them.  Washing makes them more prone to spoiling and it is a sad, sad day when you have to throw out fuzzy berries. (shakes head in sorrowed disbelief)  Boy, I don’t know about you, but all this talk about red, sweet, plump strawberries is making me a little hungry.  I am going to go visit the Oldfather Farm Kitchen while you read over this recipe.  :)

Ingredients: yields 2 1/2 cups puree

Preparation:

 

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2 thoughts on “Strawberry with Balsamic and Cracked Black Pepper Fruit Leather ~ Gourmet Edition ~

  1. Anne-Marie says:

    What I fantastic combination. It reminds me a dessert I had when living in Vienna, Austria: blazed strawberries with ground pepper. It was the time the “new kitchen” style started with such “exotic” combinations.
    Definetely, I will try this recipe next summer.
    Have a beautiful and inspiring day ahead, AM

    • amie-sue says:

      Thank you Anne-Marie… I had a great day. Busy one. I processed 400 lbs of bananas. This isn’t a Thanksgiving tradition. haha It was a quite day at home, just Bob and I. Very nice. Have a wonderful weekend. amie sue :)

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