With Memorial Day upon us, you may be planning to fire up your grill for a weekend celebrating with family and friends. Here’s the perfect, no-cook dessert solution. Whip sour cream with honey and vanilla to use as a dip for fresh, sweet strawberries and allow everyone to dive in. There’s something addictive about the sweet and tangy combination that makes them hard to stop eating.
Redwood Hill Farm
One of the fun things about being a food writer is attending special events and the opportunity to learn about fantastic products. This past weekend I was fortunate to attend a cheesemaking and tasting featuring Redwood Hill Farm and Green Valley Organics. This award-winning, certified humane, Grade A goat dairy farm and creamery has been family owned and operated for 45 years. They are located in the beautiful wine country of Sonoma County, California.
A Lesson in Cheesemaking
With LA traffic unpredictable, the hosts were still setting up as I arrived early. Jennifer Bice (above center), owner and cheesemaker at Redwood Hill Farm and Green Valley Organics, (their sister brand) was putting out delicious goat cheeses for us to taste while goat milk heated on the stovetop to make fresh ricotta cheese.
I’ll pause briefly to let you know I have three recipes to share with you from the event. The strawberries with the honey-vanilla sour cream dip is the first. The other two will be published soon – a baked goat feta cheese appetizer and an easy, homemade goat milk ricotta cheese. All are heavenly and easy!
This dessert dip uses Green Valley Organics lactose-free sour cream. It’s not the usual sour cream. The texture is thick and rich, more like the French sour cream called creme fraiche. It’s available at Whole Foods and other grocers. If you can’t find this brand, you can use regular sour cream (what my mom did), creme fraiche (available everywhere these days), or a combination of the two. But look for the Green Valley Organics brand. It’s the best sour cream I have ever had.
Back to dessert. Whisk sour cream with honey and vanilla together in a small bowl. Wash the berries and leave the green tops on. Use the green tops to hold the berries, like a natural handle for the creamy dip. The combination of the sweet and tang are incredible. Its an easy, no-cook solution for dessert. My mom used to serve this as a dessert and I had completely forgotten until Saturday!
Optionally, you can offer a small bowl of natural brown sugar or coconut sugar to dip the berries into after the sour cream. That gives a bit more sweetness and a nice crunch. If you want to reduce sugar, skip this. The honey in the sour cream provides just enough sweetness with naturally sweet strawberries.
My thanks to Andrew Wilder of Eating Rules and Erika Kerekes of In Erikas Kitchen for hosting the event. Big thanks to Jennifer Bice of Redwood Hill Farm and Green Valley Organics for traveling to LA to share her amazing knowledge of cheesemaking as well as her fantastic goat cheeses, sour cream, and other wonderful dairy products.