When berry season has come and gone…
It’s true that seasonal fruits are typically available in most supermarkets in the off-season, but if you like to take advantage of what is local, fresh, organic and at its peak flavor—even when farmer’s market season is over—there is an easy way to preserve the wonderfully tart-sweet flavor of raspberries throughout the Fall-Winter season. Freeze them.
Of course, you can also just buy frozen organic berries. Either way, raspberries are worth their weight in gold, if you ask me… They have the least amount of sugar of any berry; just a smidge more than grape tomatoes. What’s more, they are loaded with disease-fighting antioxidants and fiber. And they’re yummy. Who doesn’t like raspberries?
Why should you add Raspberry Coulis to your repertoire?
Raspberry Coulis is a delicious, versatile sauce, bursting with Summer flavor, made with just 3 ingredients, in just 15 minutes. You’ll be tempted to use it as a topping for so many things, in addition to its more common role as an integral ingredient in desserts and baked goods or as a topping for ice cream (or making popsicles!)—it’s perfect for drizzling over yogurt, oatmeal or buckwheat pancakes for breakfast, too. At lunch or dinner, shake it up into your basic vinaigrette recipe for a tangy raspberry dressing, or make a glaze for a simple baked chicken breast. Use your imagination and get creative. Today, we’re going to talk cocktails and mocktails, but first…
What the heck is a coulis anyway?
Pronounced koo-LEE, it is French for a sauce made from puréed and strained fruits and vegetables. The classical use of the term was for a 3X-reduced meat sauce. Now, sweet and savory coulis made from puréed fruits and veggies are more common. Restaurant chefs use coulis for plating entrees as well as desserts. Just put it in a squeeze bottle and get creative!
What makes a coulis different from other fruit sauces? This smooth, sexy, pourable sauce is really just a simple fruit compote with a couple of extra steps—it has been blended and strained. The straining is the key.
It keeps it in the fridge 5-7 days, but what I love most is that coulis can be frozen. Ice cube trays are great for instant portions, without having to thaw the whole batch.
Trust me when I say that having this beautifully hued raspberry coulis on hand is like having a delicious and impressive magic trick up your sleeve.
You’ll love pulling out this gorgeous raspberry coulis to whip up so many simple yet spectacular recipes—from breakfast, savory dishes and desserts—to as many beverages your imagination can conjure.
The recipe is fast and easy with just 3 ingredients:
- Two 10-ounce bags frozen *organic raspberries
- 1/4 cup extra-fine sugar (thickens & preserves)
- 2-3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (balances & brightens)
- Mix frozen (don’t thaw) raspberries, extra-fine sugar and lemon juice in a saucepan over low-medium heat. Stir until raspberries thaw and break down, sugar dissolves and mixture is heated through and syrupy, 7-10 minutes.
- Use a stick blender (preferred) or transfer to a stand blender and give it a whirl. Then pour puree into fine-mesh strainer, pressing with back of spoon or rubber spatula to strain out seeds.
- Once cooled, transfer to a sealed glass jar and store in the refrigerator—or freeze in an ice cube tray covered well with plastic wrap, and thaw as needed.
*Why is organic important? Berries are sprayed with more pesticides the any other fruit, topping the EWG’s “dirty dozen” list. Enough said.
RASPBERRY GIN-GIN FIZZ
Gin’s juniper notes give this citrusy sparkler its Wintery vibe—the ginger beer gives it a little bit of bite.
The Raspberry Gin-Gin Fizz is a riff on a Gin Fizz, mixing gin and ginger beer with raspberry coulis and lime juice for a tangy cocktail that’s beautiful, too.
PS: Feel free to use tonic, if you prefer. Not a fan of gin? By all means, use vodka.
In a highball glass, stir 2 OUNCES GIN with 1 OUNCE RASPBERRY COULIS and 1 OUNCE FRESH LIME JUICE. Add ice cubes and top off with GINGER BEER (or ginger ale). Garnish with lime and a rosemary sprig.
WINTER BERRY APEROL SPRITZ
The Aperol Spritz is a trendy drink these days and fairly adaptable. If Aperol is a bit too bitter for you but you like the general flavor profile, you may love this variation with fruity raspberry coulis. It’s the bomb. The coulis gives this classic Italian beverage a tangy-sweet twist. Feel free to use less coulis if you just want a hint of fruit flavor.
Add 2 OUNCES RASPBERRY COULIS to a highball glass. Top with ice, then add a 3:1:1 ratio of CHAMPAGNE or PROSECCO, APEROL and CLUB SODA. Garnish with fresh mint. Delish!
WINTER BERRY MOCKTAIL
Looking for a non-alcoholic refresher that feels festive without the booze?
In a tall iced tea glass, stir 1-2 OUNCES OF RASPBERRY COULIS (depends on how sweet you would like it) with a generous squeeze of LIME JUICE or ORANGE JUICE. Add ice cubes and top with SPARKLING WATER, GINGER BEER OR GINGER ALE. Garnish with a citrus slice and/or mint sprig.
RECIPE 2.0, The Lazy Version:
Remember the coulis cubes that you froze in an ice tray? Toss a couple of those babies into a tall glass and top with sparkling water and a squeeze of whatever citrus you have on hand. As the cubes begin to melt, the Winter Berry Mocktail will get yummier and yummier… Unlike regular ice cubes, which make your drink more watery as they melt. ENJOY!