This luscious summer dessert - a blueberry fool - is similar to one I made as a child in the kitchen of a Swedish neighbor. A fruit fool is a dessert made with stewed or puréed fruit that is folded into a beaten cream or custard and served icy cold. It's a classic British dessert that was first made in the 16th century. It is usually served when fresh fruits are abundant. The fruit most favored to use in this dessert is the gooseberry, but, as they are not easy to come by, I use blueberries. Actually, any stewed fruit can be used. Times and taste have altered the way old desserts are made and this one is no exception. Today's version comes from Fine Cooking magazine. Strangely enough, it's higher in calories than many of the older recipes. I must be honest here. The magazine's version of the recipe is absolutely delicious, but when I make it for Bob I've been known to use a vanilla pudding that's been lightened with a nondairy whipped topping. It, too, is a lovely dessert but it's far less caloric than one that uses crème pâtissière or whipped cream as its base. This is extremely easy to make and it can assembled in less than thirty minutes. It does, however, require time to chill, so be sure to plan accordingly. The stewed blueberries would be absolutely delicious as a standalone or as a sauce for ice cream. I think you'll like the simplicity of this dessert.
4 cups blueberries, rinsed, picked over, and drained
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Scant 1/8 teaspoon salt
Scant 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1-1/4 cups cold heavy cream
1) In a medium saucepan, combine blueberries, brown sugar, lemon juice, salt, and nutmeg. Simmer over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until berries have released their juice and burst when lightly pressed with a spoon, about 6 minutes. . Increase the heat to high and reduce mixture by half, stirring frequently to prevent scorching, 6-7 minutes. Pour the compote into a bowl and refrigerate until very cold, about 4 hours. The stewed blueberries will keep for up to 3 days in the refrigerator. Taste and adjust flavorings if you like, but remember that flavors will be muted when mixed with cream.
2) In a chilled bowl, whip cream to form firm but not stiff peaks. With a rubber spatula, gently fold half of the chilled compote into the cream just until incorporated. Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 24 hours. Just before serving, spoon remaining compote over the fool. Yield: 4 servings.
I'm sending this to Gollum at Designs By Gollum who is hostess for "Foodie Friday."