“Oh, by the way, can you bring a dessert?” Dreaded last minute words. A 4th of July celebration and you’re suddenly responsible with the part of the meal that will be the last thing on everyone’s tongue. And obviously, for this holiday it needs to be thematic. Red, white, and blue, pie, something – that box of brownies in the cupboard isn’t going to cut it.
This was my conundrum on Tuesday. I’d already been to the grocery store and really didn’t want to venture back out in the record-breaking heat-wave. So I desperately perused every red, white, and blue dessert on Pinterest to find something I could make out of my pantry.
Well, I didn’t find one thing but I did find about four. Put them together and you have the Almond Glazed Angel Food Cake with Berry Coulis! Luckily I had a fridge stocked with fresh fruit, a big plastic squeezy lemon, and a box of angel food cake, sugar, and almond extract. The results certainly seemed to please the crowd – there was complete and total silence as dessert was devoured after a meal filled with conversation and jokes. I’m pretty sure you could make this for any event and it would make some people very very happy!
Angel Food Cake – pre-made or box cake (look, you can make it from scratch, too. More power to ya.)
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup water
¼ cup lemon juice
¼ tsp almond extract
Heat the sugar, the lemon juice and water in a saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring, until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and stir in the almond extract.
Brush all sides of the cake with the syrup.
Strawberry Coulis – raw
2 cups quartered hulled strawberries (about 12 ounces)
¼ cup water
3 tbls sugar
1 tbls fresh lemon juice
Combine strawberries, water, sugar, and lemon juice in blender. Purée until very smooth, then press through a fine mesh strainer to remove the seeds. Cover and refrigerate until cold. Coulis can be prepared one day ahead.
Blueberry Coulis – cooked
2 ½ cups blueberries
1/3 cup sugar
zest of 1 lemon
1 tblsp lemon juice
Make blueberry coulis by combining the blueberries, sugar, lemon juice, and zest in a small saucepan over medium heat. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until berries start to burst. Cool slightly. Pour into blender and puree until smooth. Pour through a mesh strainer into a bowl to remove any little bits. Cover and store coulis in refrigerator until ready to use. This can be made several days in advance.
Drizzle coulis and extra fruit over the cake just before serving. Serve with additional coulis and vanilla ice cream on the side. (coulis is also excellent just served over ice cream or French toast)