I debated what to call this recipe. I knew I couldn’t get away with calling it a parfait or a shortcake, because this berry and cream concoction is a dessert in its own right. So I finally decided to call a spade a spade by giving it its traditional (yet unfortunate) name: a fruit “fool”. Yes, my friends, I’d like to introduce you to the 4-ingredient Summer Fruit Fool recipe you didn’t know you needed in your life. Stick with me, you’ll be glad you did.
Before we get into what exactly a fruit jester is islet’s talk about desserts at dinner parties. Although I think it’s always a good idea to offer something sweet to end a meal when you’ve already dealt with starters, drinks, mains and sides…dessert is a good option to keep it simple.
That’s why this summer fruit craze is one of my go-to meals. Not only does it come together in less than 15 minutes, you can whip it up ahead of time and have it hanging in the fridge well before the guests arrive. Most importantly – it’s a true crowd pleaser that people lose their minds over when they take their first bite. If you’re new to the world of fruit trick recipes, read on, because once you start, you won’t be able to stop.
What exactly is a fruit trick?
A fruit jester is a traditional English dessert made by folding thick custard or whipped cream into stewed or macerated fruit. It can be made with almost any fruit you can think of: stewed apples in the fall, rhubarb and strawberries in the spring, and even mango in the summer time. My favorite version is this combination of cherries, blackberries and raspberries – the sweet tart fruit is a perfect complement to the cream.
My version of a fool appears looks like a trifle at first glance, as I put some of the macerated berries together with the cream mixture in individual glasses. However, a trifle usually includes cake as one of its layers, whereas a fool skips that step and keeps it simple with just berries and cream.
This is how you make a fool
Although traditional English fool recipes start by boiling the fruit, mine is one no cook version. You simply macerate the fruit by combining with sugar and lemon juice to extract the liquid and concentrate the flavor. It creates a jam compote that adds all the juicy flavor to the cream.
You then fold the macerated fruit into strong whipped cream. It’s up to you if you keep folding until the color becomes more uniform or if you just fold it a few times to leave it striped. I prefer the latter – the colors are so amazing when you can see the bands of fruit that almost give a marbled effect. Either way, you’ll want to serve it really chilled for a dessert that’s creamy and filling, but still feels right for a warm summer night.
A perfect summer dinner dessert
Every year I look for a simple, signature dessert to serve at dinner parties during the season. This summer, a fruit trick is my answer. Not only is it incredibly easy to make for a crowd, but the presentation feels festive enough for a party. I love seeing the colorful layers of berries and cream in individual glasses, but for a different presentation, pour it into a large trifle dish or glass bowl. Add a serving spoon so guests can scoop out their portion, or go wild and give everyone an individual spoon to dig in, family style.
If you’d like to make this in advance, the fruit and cream mixture keeps miraculously well for up to 24 hours in the fridge. Add a layer of macerated berries just before serving. Scroll on for the recipe and if you make it, give us a rating and let us know how it goes.