Friday, April 25, 2008

Strawberry Rhubarb Filo Flowers

What an odd sensation... when I'm going through the grocery store now, I think not only about feeding my family, but also about what new ingredient will I use this week for my blog. I think about what would look scrumptious on a plate, about presentation, colors and garnishes. I think about how the light is that day and if it will be sufficient for a photograph. You didn't know I cared so much about pleasing you, did you?

Growing up, for all the holidays there were 3 type of pies: pumpkin, cherry, pecan. Later on, sometimes we would throw in an apple or the ever popular but labor intensive lemon merengue. There was no banana cream pie, no berry pie, no key lime pie, no chess pie, no mincemeat, no chocolate cream pie and certainly no strawberry-rhubarb. Honestly, I would have not thought of the combo unless I was really looking through my produce aisle for something different.

This dish will qualify as two new ingredients: rhubarb and filo. I bought the filo without really knowing what I was going to do with it. I knew it was versatile (savory or sweet) and tricky to work with. For me, it wasn't so bad. The flower cups were quite easy actually, just fragile. You couldn't pick the flower up and eat the dessert, it was a spoon adventure for sure.

Strawberry Rhubarb Filo Flowers

For the topping:
2 cups chopped rhubarb
2 cups chopped strawberries
1/2 cup sugar
1 T. orange zest
Saute the rhubarb with sugar for about 7 minutes, turn off heat and add strawberries and zest. It might be a good idea to thicken the sauce with a little cornstarch. I didn't do that, but it would have been better and less juicy/messy.

For the filling:
1 package cream cheese
1 cup sour cream
zest of one lemon
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup sugar (or more to taste)

Wisk together until very smooth and keep in the fridge until ready to assemble.

For the filo flowers:

Take out 6 sheets of filo, and cut in half lengthwise and then in thirds from there. You should get 6 smaller squares from one sheet. Put them in a pile and cover with plastic wrap and a damp towel. Invert a muffin tin and spray with Pam. Lay a sqare over the inverted muffin cup and then stagger the next so that it forms points. In between every two sheets, give it a spray. If you want more flavor, use melted butter in between layers (too much work for me). Bake at 350 for 8 minutes. You may have to do this on every other muffin cup, so they don't overlap and stick together.

Assembly: You really should have figured this out, but I will insult your intelligence anyways. Put a couple tablespoons of cream cheese mixture in the filo cup and top with the fruit mixture.

This tart and sweet dessert was a hit with everyone. I heard the word "fancypants" being thrown around, so maybe it seemed more gourmet than it actually was. Who knows, maybe I will try a souffle soon....or not!

1 comment:

LouAnne said...

Strawberry and rhubarb are a classic combination. My godmother grew rhubarb in her garden and my mother always made rhubarb pies. I of course never touched the stuff! She always made jam with the strawberries, and of course fresh, hot homemade bread to go with it. Talk about agony - waiting for the bread to be cool enough to slice and toast!