A Berry Boozy Dessert
Just when I thought I didn’t have any more recipes from my late stepfather Mr. C, I rediscovered this delicious way to serve those gorgeous strawberries that are just coming into season. I love the first berries of spring as they are so big and juicy, and ooze strawberry deliciousness.
There is a lot of booze in this recipe, and I do not have a substitute for any of it, so I would not serve this to any of the under-21 set. (You don’t need to use the bottle of cognac below that we were told by a server cost $3,000 at the bar in Le Château Frontenac in Quebec City on our 2019 Canada trip.)
The first time we had these armagnac berries I learned how to pull a cork out of an empty wine bottle using a napkin! And, Mr. C showed us a trick where he used a broom handle to flip an egg out of a tin pie pan into a glass of water. Yes, alcohol was flowing on this particular evening, and not just in the dessert.
Use the ripest berries you can find. Slice into thick slices or quarters and macerate in the sugar and booze for at least an hour (overnight is even better). Spoon the berries and liquid over ice cream or gelato for a fabulous, albeit, boozy dessert.
Spoon over waffles for a decadent brunch option, and top with whipped cream and orange zest (neither of which I had for this photo). Yum!!
2 oz. Armagnac (or cognac)
4 oz. dry sherry
4 oz. port
1/4 cup sugar
2 baskets ripe strawberries, stems removed and thickly sliced
1 pint vanilla ice cream or gelato
Optional garnish: whipped cream and zest of an orange or lemon
In a large Ziplock or dish large enough to hold the berries, combine the liquid ingredients and sugar until dissolved. Add the berries to the mixture being sure the liquid covers the berries. Cover and let marinate in the refrigerator for at least an hour. (If using the Ziplock lay flat in the refrigerator so all the berries get marinated.)
Place a small scoop of vanilla ice cream or gelato (try Talenti Gelato Madagascan Vanilla Bean or your favorite) in serving bowls, large wine glasses, martini glasses, etc. Spoon the berries and liquid over the top. If desired, add a dollop of whipped cream or a quick zesting of an orange or lemon over the top or both!
Bonus Cocktail recipe from the famed Tom Tom Lounge located inside the majestic Mai Tai Tom Sports Room & Bar using the leftover juice from the Strawberries Armagnac:
2 Ounces of your favorite Citron or Orange Vodka
1/2 Ounce of Cointreau or Triple Sec
1/2 – 1 Ounce of leftover juice from the Strawberries Armagnac
1/2 Orange (Squeezed) – optional
Fill Martini Shaker with ice. Add Vodka, Cointreau/Triple Sec, Strawberries Armagnac juice and squeezed orange juice. Shake! Shake! Shake! Shake Your Booty! Strain into a chilled martini glass, garnish with strawberry slice, and you have yourself a Strawberries Armagnac TomTini.
Note: Sometimes, I have been known to accidentally add a little extra vodka to my TomTinis.