Sheep’s Milk Ricotta Mousse With Strawberry Compote
A little workshop update before getting onto today’s dessert: there are a few spots available for the workshop I am teaching with food stylist Tami Hardeman and prop stylist Mindi Shapiro July 26-28th in Birmingham (details here).
Two full days of complete hands on instructions about how to food style, prop and photograph challenging items such as cocktails, drinks, casseroles, dips and spreads. We will give you all our techniques and tips while working in a naturally lit professional photo studio in downtown Birmingham.
Every time I see berries I think about my parents, my family, my childhood, Provence and the Hautes Alpes. I can’t help it. We would spend the greater part of the summer in the Alps where my parents have a chalet and pick berries by the side of the road. Wild strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries. It was one of the activities we loved to get involved in, as much as trout fishing on Sundays or snail "hunting" after the rain with my grandfather.
Buckets of strawberries, blueberries and blackberries would then be turned into jams and jellies. Jars upon jars would fill our pantry, my grandparents pantry and would be gifted to neighbors throughout the year. I always thought of my mother and grandmother as jam fairies. I do my best to follow suit and preserve or turn into jam the bounty of each season. I make smaller batches. I experiment a little bit more with spices and combinations.
I try to keep their teachings and legacy alive. I also turn much of what I gather and pick into baked goods, infusions and ice creams. When I get more than I can handle I make cobblers and crisps. Or clafoutis, sauces and compotes. Nothing gets lost. I love just cooking a big pot of berries into a soft compote to be spooned over yogurt, ice cream or mousse. A super simple way to end a summer meal. Soft textures and layers of flavors.
A few weeks ago, one of our freelance food stylists gifted me with a dozen eggs from her chickens and sheep’s milk ricotta from her dairy farm, Dayspring Dairy. I knew right from the start that I wanted to turn the ricotta into a mousse. And layer it with berrries or berry compote. There is something special about homemade dairy. More so when you know the story and people behind it and what it took to have such treasure in my hands.
To make the most of that ricotta, I simply folded it with honey and whipped cream and layered it with softly cooked strawberries. A little soft, a little chunky, a little sweet and a whole lot perfect.
Sheep’s Milk Ricotta Mousse And Strawberry Compote:
Serves 6 to 8
1 pound strawberries
1/2 cup granulated sugar
juice and zest of one small lemon
1 cup sheep’s milk ricotta (cow’s milk works fine although a bit more subtle in flavor)
1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream, whipped to soft peaks
In a heavy saucepan, place the strawberries, sugar, lemon zest and juice and bring to a low boil over medium high heat. Stir well. Turn the heat to low and bring to a simmer. Continue to cook down the fruit, stirring occasionally for about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
In large bowl, mix together the ricotta and honey. Gently fold in the whipped cream.
Layer the ricotta mixture and strawberry compote evenly among glasses or ramekins. Serve immediately.
gretchen July 1, 2013 um 1:42 pm
beautiful images as always! love that ana kelly… i worked in the oh tk with her 10 years ago. she's so gentle and talented. bummer to miss working with you, but they are certainly blessed to have had you join them!
Tieghan July 1, 2013 um 1:47 pm
This looks incredible! So pretty!
lacasasullaScogliera July 1, 2013 um 2:26 pm
Ma è delizioso!!!! e le tue foto fanno sì che si mangi tutto con gli…occhi!
Seanna Lea July 1, 2013 um 2:45 pm
This sounds wonderfully delicious. The farmer's market is right down the street from where I work, so I think it is time for a trip there tomorrow to pick up summer dessert ingredients.
Susan Lindquist July 1, 2013 um 2:51 pm
Tasty to the eye and the palate!
kivrin82 July 1, 2013 um 3:25 pm
Wow! Very tasty look!
Unknown July 1, 2013 um 4:22 pm
Lovely 🙂 Miss you, friend!
Unknown July 1, 2013 um 5:33 pm
Ohhh I bet this is so yummy!
Unknown July 1, 2013 um 5:33 pm
I bet this tastes amazing!
lubnakarim06 July 1, 2013 um 5:44 pm
It's an treat visually…..lovely….
Unknown July 1, 2013 um 6:12 pm
This looks delicious!
Ondina Maria July 1, 2013 um 11:24 pm
Your work is ever sooooo inspiring: the photos, the recipes, hmmmm. Plus, your book is my bible and thanks to it (I've ready 3 times now!) I've managed to improve my photographs a lot. Thank you so much for carrying out such a great work Hélène 🙂
Nikki @ NikSnacks July 2, 2013 um 3:37 am
How is the texture of the ricotta mousse? It looks beautiful & I'm sure it tastes even better…
ThisGirlBlogs July 2, 2013 um 7:58 am
Mmmm that looks delightful! Anything with strawberries is a winner for me 🙂
Judy Myer July 2, 2013 um 10:11 am
OMG!!! What a heavenly dessert!!! Mousse plus strawberry? Ugggghh, this makes me hungry right now! Lovely photos and lovely food. Awesome!
Gaia July 2, 2013 um 12:21 pm
So easy and so delicious!
Anonymous July 2, 2013 um 2:19 pm
There is nothing better than fresh ricotta!!
Unknown July 2, 2013 um 3:42 pm
Beautiful all around. Your work is amazing and I look forward to trying this recipe. Thanks for the inspiration!
Helen July 2, 2013 um 6:48 pm
looks great, Yuummm
Paige July 2, 2013 um 8:50 pm
This looks amazing; I'm a huge fan of strawberry compote! I'll have to try this. Thanks, Helene!
Unknown July 2, 2013 um 10:54 pm
Such a beautiful and simple dessert.
petal and plume July 5, 2013 um 5:25 pm
what an incredible unique and wonderful recipe!
Rocky Mountain Woman July 5, 2013 um 9:33 pm
I love the texture of fresh ricotta…this looks like something that could become quite obsessive….
lauriane July 6, 2013 um 3:16 pm
Great idea this dessert ! simple and beautiful… and as usual a lot of beautiful pictures. You're an artist !
Carla @ Gluten Free Recipe Box July 8, 2013 um 4:21 am
Sounds and looks so yummy!
mouny July 8, 2013 um 6:05 pm
Wow this looks really amazing. They remind me of my balsamic-strawberry pops made with fresh strawberries 🙂
vanessa joie July 8, 2013 um 8:56 pm
looks beautiful and delicious. i've missed your blog so! finally getting back into the swing of things.
Hannah July 9, 2013 um 5:23 pm
Yum, this looks absolutely delicious. I love berry season and we're in the thick of it here – I need to go berry picking and make some of my father's strawberry vanilla jam.
Jude July 10, 2013 um 1:54 am
Sheep's milk ricotta plus strawberry? Wow!!! A very yummy dessert!
Dayspring Dairy July 10, 2013 um 5:26 am
Thanks Helene! Absolutely beautiful and looks delicious.
Dayspring Dairy July 10, 2013 um 5:29 am
Thanks Helene for a beautiful post!
SimonasKitchen Simona Cherubini July 10, 2013 um 12:49 pm
So pretty picts!!!
MacLean July 10, 2013 um 6:02 pm
Amazing how often the most simple things are the most delicious!
Carla July 15, 2013 um 2:20 pm
Great dessert looks great as well.
stylewomen July 19, 2013 um 3:29 pm
Hmm this looks delicious! 🙂 i want try…
The best recipe
Helene July 20, 2013 um 2:08 pm
Klfoodblog.com: I got them a couple of years ago at CB2.
Siv – A World in My Oven September 21, 2013 um 5:28 pm
I've made ricotta myself several times and not once have I thought of turning it into a sweet dessert! I'm definitely going to try this though.. It sounds delish!