Shortbread With Berries

“Shortbread is definitely a throwback to times past,” says Mark Farro, sous chef in charge of pastry at Uproot in Warren. “We focus more on the accoutrements and less on the shortbread itself. The freshness and sweetness of the berries comes forward on the palate to balance the natural levels of acidity in the fruit. This dessert will not burden you with unnecessary calories. However, it will satisfy your sweet tooth.”

Photo by Ruben Woolcott.

Yield: About 2 dozen little shortbread squares

Short Bread:
3/4 cup almond Flour (or any nut flour)
3 cups cake flour
1 cup powdered sugar
1 vanilla bean, split and seeded (optional)
2 Tbsp. baking powder
1 stick unsalted butter (cold)
1 cup + 2 Tbsp. heavy cream (cold)

Preheat oven to 325 F (Oven rack in the center of the oven.)

In food processor, pulse almond flour, cake flour, powdered sugar, vanilla bean, and baking powder until well combined.

Take butter and cut into small cubes; add butter to dry mix and pulse for 30 seconds.

Add heavy cream to the mix and pulse until dough forms. Take dough out of food processor and roll into a ball then place in refrigerator for about one hour.

Take cookie tray and place parchment paper on bottom.

After the dough has been well chilled, place on clean surface and start to roll out with a rolling pin. Add flour if necessary to prevent sticking, roll to about 1/4 inch and use a cookie cutter or your knife to cut desired shapes. (Work with the dough quickly to prevent dough warming up or it will not rise.)

Place on cookie tray with room between each cookie, and then bake for about 15 minutes or until a light golden brown.

Yield: About 2 cups of compote

Blackberry Compote: (can also use strawberries, blueberries, or huckleberries)
1 quart blackberries
1/4 cup sugar
1 orange (for zest and juice)
1tsp. vanilla extract
1 sprig mint
1 sprig tarragon

Combine all ingredients into small pot and place on stove bring until a simmer. Take off stove and remove the mint and tarragon. Allow to cool at room temperature for about 15 minutes, and then place in refrigerator. After it has chilled, it is ready to use.

About 3 cups

Vanilla Whipped Cream:
2 cups heavy cream, chilled
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 vanilla bean (split and scraped)

Place all ingredients in hand mixer or kitchen aid with the wire whip attachment. Start mixer on low first and proceed to rise to med-high and whip until medium peaks form on wire whip. Place whip cream in sealed container and refrigerate until ready to use.

Yields: About 2 dozen medium sized cubes of gelée

Blackberry Gelée:
4 envelopes KNOX unflavored gelatin
1 cup blackberry juice, cold
3 cups blackberry juice (heated to a boil)

Place all four packets of gelatin on 1 cup of cold blackberry juice. Allow to sit for about 1 minute, and then add the 3 cups of boiling blackberry juice and pour over the cold juice. Stir very slowly, until well incorporated. (Avoid making too many bubbles when stirring mixture, as this will affect end result.)

Place gelatin mixture into desired molds and allow to sit in refrigerator until fully set, about 1 hour.

Read more Eat & Drink articles.

By submitting comments you grant permission for all or part of those comments to appear in the print edition of New Jersey Monthly.

Required not shown
Required not shown