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Jazz up mixed berries?

  • m

I'm bringing mixed berries (straw, blue, black, rasp) to an office luncheon and I wondered if there's anything I could do to make them more exciting either in terms of preparation or presentation? Thanks!

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  1. well, you could macerate them with sugar or honey and a little orange ligueur like Grand Marnier. Call it "drunken berries". You could put a slice of lemon pound cake at the bottom of a bowl. Put a scoop of ice cream on the cake then ladle the macerated fruit on top of the ice cream.

    You could stuff the raspberries with chocolate chips. Just scoop out a hole at the top. Strawberries can be stuffed with cream cheese.

    You could use them in a tart or on top of a cake and glaze them with apricot jam. Makes them all shiny.

    Perhaps you could use skewers to make fruit kebobs. You could glaze these, too. You could dip the kebobs in sour cream and sprinkle brown sugar on them. with just strawberries, this tastes just like strawberry short cake. I see no reason why you couldn't use the technique on other fruits too.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Hank Hanover

      If it's an office luncheon I'd avoid the liqueur. Many people avoid alcohol for personal, medical or religious reasons, and that could be a major, even career ending faux pax.

      1. re: JonParker

        I'm a consultant so I have other ways to jettison my career!

        1. re: JonParker

          That is the safest way. Although I doubt anyone will get drunk on a tablespoon of Grand Marnier in a dish to serve 6.

          1. re: Hank Hanover

            It's not a question of getting drunk. Some people avoid it for religious reasons, and the taste can be a trigger for alcoholics. It's like telling someone who's Jewish that a dish doesn't have much pork in it.

      2. Serve them with a side dish of creme fraiche, or it that is unavailable, some high octane sour cream. We are currently enjoying a 30% sour cream with our mixed berry clafoutis, which is another way to dress up those berries.

        1 Reply
        1. Add sliced plums or nectarines for more color. I did not say peaches because those would need peeling. Macerate with honey or agave nectar and spoon over pound cake or those little spongecake dessert shells sold in packages of 6 in supermarkets. Garnish with a sprig of mint.

          1 Reply
          1. re: greygarious

            Why would the peaches need peeling?

          2. A watermelon boat makes a pretty presentation.

            1. Berries with fresh mint or basil are a great combo.
              A pretty and simple presentation would be to use clear individual glasses and layer berries by color.
              Or use one larger clear serving dish and layer by color.

              1. Put them on kebab sticks interspersed with marshmallows and serve with some caramel sauce on the side, if desired/ appropriate (i.e. it could be messy!)

                1. These are such amazing ideas you guys! I will skip the liqueur although will try that at home sometime. It's all women and we do love us some greek yogurt so I think I'll put a bowl of yogurt in the center and then pile the fruit around it. Some honey and mint will be a good add too. Thanks again!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: mocro

                    If you're set on the yogurt-berry-honey-mint (which sounds fine) thing, mint oil (blanch mint for 10s or so, shock, blend with canola oil) can be a good way to incorporate it.

                  2. I like taking clottled cream and biscuts and serving them with berries cooked down with a bit of balsamic and brown lemon juice

                    1. Just to close the circle....my mixed berries were a big hit thanks to your advice and were so easy. I lightly tossed straw, blue, black and raspberries with honey and mint leaves and served them with a bowl of creme fraiche. The only change I'd make is not to toss with the raspberries - add them after - as they got smushed despite my light handling. Thanks, Chowies!