Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Strawberries from the Market

As soon as the farmer’s market season kicks off, I start to get antsy for my CSA share to begin. But while I’m waiting for my first box to arrive, I frequent the Green City Farmer’s Market, which started on May 16, and just this past weekend, our Wicker Park Farmer’s Market opened its doors. As you would expect, there are a lot of greens, asparagus, spring onions and... strawberries. Beautiful, crimson, fragrant strawberries. I froze some for smoothies, bought a pint and made ice cream, and my favorite use: Strawberry Bruschetta. The inspiration for this recipe came from an appetizer offered at Enoteca Roma. My version takes it one step closer to being dessert – or maybe an indulgent breakfast!

STRAWBERRY BRUSCHETTA | I use the chocolate bread from Red Hen Bread – it has a rich, chocolately flavor with a moderate amount of chips, but it’s not too sweet. You could also use a plain, hearty white or french bread with great results.

Toast the bread, spread with marscapone cheese, layer with sliced or, if they’re small, whole strawberries and drizzle with balsamic vinegar reducation. Enjoy!

For balsamic vinegar reduction, place 1 cup of good quality balsamic vinegar in a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Simmer over medium-low heat until reduced by half and it is the consistency of syrup. The reduction will become thicker as it cools. Store in the refrigerator and drizzle on fish, salads, vegetables or fruit.

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