Sugared berries, drowned in heavy cream, is as summery and simple as dessert gets. This Big Little Recipe takes that perfect combo and makes it even better with the addition of caraway seeds. This ingredient has a peppery, earthy, fennel-ish flavor that’s just as welcome in savory dishes as it is in sweet ones.
Dry-toasting the caraway seeds is a very short but crucial step. Like an alarm clock, a hot skillet wakes up the spice—which, odds are, has been sitting in a jar for quite some time.
The type of berry is totally up to you. But do choose just one, be it strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, or blueberries—this way, the chosen fruit can shine on its own, not compete for attention. I like to quarter or halve strawberries, and leave the others whole (or halve a few for varied textures).
This is one of our Big Little Recipes, our weekly column all about dishes with big flavor and little ingredient lists. Do you know (and love) a recipe that’s low in ask, high in reward? Let us know in the comments. —Emma Laperruque
plus 2 teaspoons granulated sugar, divided
Toast the caraway seeds in a small skillet over medium to medium-low heat for 3 to 5 minutes, swirling every so often, until they’re very fragrant. Transfer to a coffee/spice grinder, along with 2 teaspoons of sugar and a small pinch of salt. Blitz until the caraway and sugar are very finely ground, almost like cocoa powder. Stir this into the heavy cream and stick in the fridge. At this point, you can move right to the berries, or let the infused cream chill for up to 1 day.
Prep the berries as needed, depending on the type (see the Author Notes). Combine with the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar and another teeny pinch of salt. Let macerate for at least 10 minutes, until the fruit is very syrupy.
Once the fruit is ready, strain the caraway cream using a fine-mesh sieve—pressing on the solids to squeeze out all that flavor—then discard the solids. (You can skip this step if you want, but the cream won’t be as smooth.)
To serve, divide the berries and their syrup between two bowls or plate-bowls. Pour the caraway cream around the berries and dig in.
Emma is the food editor at Food52. Before this, she worked a lot of odd jobs, all at the same time. Think: stir-frying noodles "on the fly," baking dozens of pastries at 3 a.m., reviewing restaurants, and writing articles about everything from how to use leftover mashed potatoes to the history of pies in North Carolina. Now she lives in New Jersey with her husband and their cat, Butter. Stay tuned every Tuesday for Emma's cooking column, Big Little Recipes, all about big flavor and little ingredient lists. And see what she's up to on Instagram at @emmalaperruque.