Strawberry Fluff with Custard Cream

Ingredients:

  • 6 3-inch meringue shells (pre-made or homemade)
  • 6 cups fresh strawberries
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 recipe Sherry Custard Cream
  • Meringue Shells
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
  • dash of salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • Sherry Custard Cream
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 2 TBSP sugar
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • 1 to 2 TBSP cream sherry
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Directions:

  1. Meringue Shells: Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Beat egg whites at medium speed with electric mixer until soft peaks form. Add vanilla, cream of tartar, salt and increase mixer speed to high. Add sugar one tablespoon at a time. Meringue is ready when stiff peaks form (about 7 minutes). Place parchment paper on baking sheet. Use back of spoon to spread meringue in circles and build up sides. Bake 35-55 minutes. Turn off oven and let shells dry in oven with door closed. Dry time is a minimum of 2 hours.
  2. Sherry Custard Cream: In a heavy saucepan, heat the milk just to boiling. In a small mixing bowl, beat together egg yolks and sugar till combined. Stir a small amount of the hot milk into the beaten egg yolks (tempering). Return all to saucepan; continue cooking egg mixture till it just coats a metal spoon. Remove from heat and cover with clear plastic wrap. Chill till completely cool. Beat whipping cream till soft peaks form. Fold into cooled custard mixture. Stir cream sherry and vanilla. Cover surface with plastic wrap and chill. Can make custard up to 2 days ahead and store in refrigerator.
  3. Hull the strawberries and then slice. Make strawberry puree by placing 2 cups of the sliced strawberries in a food processor bowl or blender container with 2 tablespoons of the sugar. Cover and process or blend until smooth. In a large bowl, whip the cream till soft peaks form, gradually adding the remaining sugar. Fold in remaining sliced strawberries.
  4. To serve, spoon cream on 1/4 of the plate. Spoon puree next to that on 1/4 of the plate. Using a toothpick, swirl the 2 together in the center. Place meringue shell on center of plate. Fill generously with strawberry fluff.

Yield: 6 servings