Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Dessert for those who don't crave sweets - Strawberries with Lime Agave Syrup

Given that we're deep into the holiday season, we've been exposed to a TON of sweets lately.  My wife got into a baking mood and produced nearly five dozen chocolate-chip and smashed candy cane cookies which were a huge hit (especially for the 5-year-old who got to take a hammer to a bag of candy canes), but between that and all the other cookies and stocking fillers, I've had my fill of sugar.
Add to that the fact that we don't even normally like sweets that much, when it came time to choose a dessert for a recent dinner party, I just couldn't bring myself to serve anything like chocolate, ice cream, pie or cake.

The rest of the meal was SoCal/Mexican themed, so I had a huge bag limes from CostCo sitting on the counter.  That reminded me of one of my favorite summer desserts, and then I realized that I'm spoiled rotten by living here in San Diego, and I can get excellent summer fruits year round!

Image courtesy of barefootwine.com
This dessert is so dead simple it didn't even occur to me to document the process, until I found myself explaining it to my guests and subsequently a few other people.

1 lb Strawberries, hulled and quartered along vertical axis
Juice of 1 lime, fresh
2-3T of Raw or Dark Agave Syrup

Combine the lime juice and agave syrup in a squeeze bottle and shake to integrate (or take my easier route and simply add lime juice to the dwindling supply of agave syrup in its original bottle)

Portion the strawberries into 3-5 dessert bowls (depending on guest count), and drizzle some of the syrup from the squeeze bottle over each serving.  Serve immediately and collect compliments.

Like I said: Dead simple, but it's hard to appreciate how well the acid and earthy sweetness work to compliment the berries.  Dark/raw agave syrup will have more of the interesting flavors and be less sweet than the refined versions.