Summer is the perfect time to bring, fresh, beautiful and juicy berries to your table! I absolutely love using Cook’s berry extracts to enhance the flavors of desserts, fruit salads, whipping cream and ice cream. Our berry extracts are made from real berry juices and lend the delicious, natural taste of summer fruits to your kitchen. I find that the way I prefer to use these extracts is in combination with the actual fruit. It is perfect for enhancing and enriching the existing flavors and also instantly turns not-quite-ripe and frozen fruits tasty and juicy.
My recommended method for using these extracts is to add about 1 Tsp of berry extract to 6-8 oz of fresh berries, with a squeeze of lemon and a spoonful of sugar. This easy berry marinade makes for a great base for a delicious fruit salad, cream desserts, such as ice cream and whipped cream, cheesecakes, and cake frostings, pies and tarts, or in chocolate desserts.
For a decadent chocolate and raspberry cake, frost between the layers of a chocolate cake with sweetened whipping cream with the above recommendation using raspberries and Cook’s Pure Raspberry Extract folded in and then cover the cake with a chocolate ganache. For a truly stunning cake, decorate with fresh
raspberries and chocolate leaves (melt your choice of chocolate and then dip mint leaves face down in the chocolate; freeze or refrigerate until firm and then gently peel the leaves away from the chocolate; for extra dimension, refrigerate over a rolling pin for curled leaves.)
For a strawberry swirl cheesecake, mix half a cup of strawberry jam, half a cup of fresh or frozen strawberries roughly sliced or diced, and 1 Tsp of strawberry extract, mashing the fresh strawberries with a fork. Dribble the thick puree-like mixture onto the top of an unbaked cheesecake and using a knife, create marbled swirl patterns. Or simply use the strawberry mixture to top a plain cheesecake for a burst of summery flavor.
These berry extracts are also fantastic in shakes and smoothies and to create a professional, flavorful strawberry, raspberry, or blackberry sauce to top desserts. Combine 2 pints of berries, 1Tsp of corresponding berry extract, ¼ cup of sugar, and a squeeze of a lemon. Cook on the stove until the berries are broken down, about 10 minutes and finally strain the sauce to the desired consistency.