Celebrate Labor Day with this airy and luscious dessert. Slabs of frozen whipped cream folded with crumbled meringues are served with a compote of the season’s freshest berries. It doesn’t get easier or lighter that this, a perfect last hurrah to summertime.
Iced Meringues and Cream with Berry Compote
Prepare the cream at least 8 hours before serving and eat within one day – which shouldn’t be difficult. Feel free to mix up the berries to your taste. Serves 8.
Iced Meringue Cream:
3 ounces meringues (about 10 [2-inch] meringues), divided
2 cups heavy cream
3 tablespoons sifted confectioners sugar
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 pound fresh berries, such as raspberries, blackberries, strawberries
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Lightly oil a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan. Line with plastic wrap, leaving a 3-inch overhang on all sides. Crumble 1/3 of the meringues, leaving large chunks intact, and spread over the bottom of the pan.
Beat the cream in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment until traces of the whisk appear. Add the sugar and vanilla and continue to beat until soft peaks form.
Crumble the remaining meringues and gently fold into the cream. Pour into the pan and spread the cream evenly on top. Cover with the plastic overhang, then cover the pan entirely with another piece of plastic wrap. Freeze for at least 8 hours and up to 24 hours.
Prepare the compote: Combine the berries, sugar and lemon juice in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Cook until the sugar dissolves and the berries break down and release their juices, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and cool completely.
To serve, remove the frozen meringue cream from the freezer. Unwrap the plastic and invert the cream onto a serving platter. Remove remaining plastic. Cut into serving slices and serve with the compote.