Menthe, feminine noun (la menthe, une menthe, des menthes)= mint, either in the sense of the plant, de la menthe, des feuilles de menthe (=mint leaves) or a mint sweet/candy, une menthe, des menthes, or bonbon à la menthe. Also crème de menthe = mint liqueur.
I’m a teeny bit ashamed of my recipe for today, which really I ought to have waited till summer to divulge. One doesn’t buy strawberries in winter, not in my book. But I just did. They looked lovely, they came from the Finistère, and they were not that expensive.
But then I had the brilliant idea of using Valentine’s Day coming up as an excuse to use them to do a Valentine’s recipe.
So, here we are, soupe de fraises à la menthe, another ridiculously easy, delicious dessert. I sometimes serve it in mini crystal liqueur glasses; it should always be served in individual transparent glassware. It’s too pretty to hide.
For 2 people you will need :
- 250gr strawberries
- 1 tbs sugar (or none at all if the berries are really ripe)
- 8 large mint leaves, and 2 little top buds to garnish
- 1tbs grand marnier, armagnac or brandy
Preparation (it takes literally 5 minutes):
- Wash, hull and dry the strawberries. If they are large, cut into quarters.
- Place in the bowl of a mini mixer with the sugar and the alcohol of your choice.
- Blend on pulse very rapidly so that the strawberries are chopped but not puréed. There must be some texture left.
- Make a little stack of the large mint leaves and cut into thin strips with scissors; stir into the strawberries.
- Serve in pretty glasses topped with the rosette of mint leaves.
Now for variations:
- You may replace the mint with basil; absolutely delicious.
- You may leave out the alcohol but it is nicer with. You can replace it with a ½ tsp of lemon juice.
- You may dip the rim of the glass in melted chocolate. Difficult to eat chocolate around the rim of a glass, but looks classy.
- You can dip a whole strawberry (hold the hull and dip half way up the pointed end) in melted chocolate, let it harden and casually garnish the plate that holds your glass of soupe de fraises.
- You may dip the rim of the glass in lemon juice and then sugar.
This dessert is light, refreshing, and slips down even after the richest of meals.