Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Cream and Currant Cups

Featured Ingredient: Currants

I’m not sure what it is about fresh currants that gets me feeling all warm and fuzzy inside. Maybe its their explosive tart flavor (tart/sour is actually my favorite of the main flavors). Perhaps it’s their ultra-short season that brings with it urgency to buy as many as possible when the chance presents itself. It could be the very attractive lady that sells them at our farmers’ market – my girlfriend Tabi doesn’t seem to mind that I have a crush on the currant lady. Or it just might be the payload of antioxidants they deliver that can confer copious health benefits.

It’s probably all the reasons that add up to make me a currant superfan. Last week at the market we picked up an entire flat and froze them so the goodness can keep coming for many weeks. Fresh currants are really great on morning oatmeal, mixed into yogurt or on top of vanilla ice-cream. For a fanciful dessert, you can also try these cream and currant cups. The topping is indeed tart (I make no apologies for that one!), so if you find it overpowering mix in additional sugar to balance it out. If you are not using silicon muffin cups, you may want to use paper liners as it might be difficult to unmold the cream cups.

If there are any other currant die-hards out there, I’d love to hear from you.We need to band together.

Cream and Currant Cups

Adapted from Food & Drink

1 tablespoon gelatin
3 tablespoons cool water
1 cup whipping cream
1 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons sugar
3/4 cup fresh currants
1 tablespoon water
2 tablespoons sugar

Sprinkle the gelatin over the water in a large bowl. In a small saucepan, combine cream, milk, vanilla and sugar. Heat over medium heat until just simmering, stirring to dissolve sugar. Pour cream mixture into the bowl with the gelatin and stir to combine. Divide mixture among 10 muffin cups, filling them about 2/3 full. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until set, about 6 hours.

Combine 1/4 cup currants, water and sugar in a bowl. Mash currants with a fork and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Stir in remaining currants. Unmold cream cups and top with currant mixture.

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