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Friday, January 31, 2014

Strawberry Tortoni

I’ve been looking to find a recipe for Strawberry Tortoni for some time but my efforts have been unsuccessful. The few recipes I came across didn’t impress me enough to give them a try so what else was left to do than create a recipe of my own.

After checking my recipes for Amaretto Biscuit, Chocolate Cookie Crumb and Coffee Tortoni the Amaretto recipe seemed the best one to experiment with.  Some adding and subtracting of ingredients produced a rather delicious Strawberry Tortoni.

Removing the Amaretto cookies, Amaretto liquor and almonds from the original recipe left me with  basic tortoni ingredients of egg whites, whipping cream and sugar.

Adding liquor to frozen dessert keeps it from freezing solid. I replaced the Amaretto liquor with an equal amount of Grand Marnier to give the desired texture.  Not to worry, the alcohol is not detectable in this dessert.

Adding fresh strawberries to this mix was not going to give me the strawberry taste I was looking for so I decided to use a cooked strawberry filling that I make regularly to top anything from ice cream to cheesecake. As easy as cooking down some strawberries and thickening the juices with a sugar, cornstarch mixture this idea offered some potential.

In the winter months frozen store bought strawberries give better results since out of season fresh strawberries usually lack taste and sweetness.

The usual paper muffin cups were used to freeze the tortoni in but this was a great opportunity to try out a recently purchased heart shaped silicone mould, totally unsure of any success but worth a try. 

Had the result in using this mould been unfavourable no one would be the wiser since it would remain my little secret and I would be the one responsible to get rid of the delicious but unpresentable evidence.

It was a good day for success!

Strawberry Tortoni
Strawberry Filling
2 cups frozen or fresh in season strawberries
2 to 3 tablespoons water
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
  1. Place strawberries and water in saucepan and simmer until strawberries begin to break down.
  2. Mash larger pieces with fork or potato masher.
  3. Mix sugar and cornstarch thoroughly (this will ensure that cornstarch will completely dissolve and not clump when added to the strawberries.
  4. Add mixture to strawberries and stir until thickened. (thickening takes a short time, stir continually)
  5. Place into a bowl and cool down then place in refrigerator until cold.
  6. Makes about 1 cup filling.

2 cups whipping cream (35% cream)
3 large egg whites
1 cup confectioners’ sugar (sift to remove lumps after measuring) divide in half
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar.
1 cup strawberry filling
2 tablespoons Grand Marnier or favourite liquor.
  1. Beat egg whites and cream of tartar until foamy, gradually add half of the confectioners’ sugar (1/2 cup) and continue beating until stiff.
  2. With clean beaters whip cream and gradually add remaining ½ cup confectioners’ sugar until very thick.
  3. Fold strawberry filling and Grand Marnier into whipping cream.
  4. Fold egg whites into whipping cream mixture until well mixed.
  5. Fill paper cups and place in freezer.
  6. Once frozen, place in a container and store in freezer.
  7. Remove from freezer for a few minutes before serving.
  8. Makes 15 tortoni.

Notes, Tips and Suggestions
  • Canned strawberry filling will probably work in this recipe although nothing compares to homemade.
  • If you are making the strawberry filling to top ice cream or a cheesecake no need to mash them before adding the sugar, cornstarch mixture.

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