Strawberries are just now bursting forth upon the markets (at least here in the Midwest; you lucky Californians have been eating them since January
). I love fresh strawberry desserts like strawberry shortcake and tarts filled to the brim with berries macerated in their own juice. I rarely cook strawberries. But this is the exception that proves the rule, a cooked strawberry recipe that deserves a place in your late-spring cookbook. This recipe is so appealing; it's fresh and easy and also a nice bridge between colder spring weather and the warmer weather that grows strawberries. (Joanna fell hard for this very same recipe last year, too; you can read her review of it here
This is also such a simple recipe that it can be made in 20 minutes for breakfast. That's how I first had it: A weekend breakfast on a late Saturday morning. I realized how simple and quick the recipe was and I threw it together in less than 10 minutes.
The strawberry dumpling in the pan. Not the most photogenic dish!
Everything about this recipe is simple. You mix together some freshly hulled and sliced strawberries with a little sugar and put them in a wide saucepan. Then you mix together an extremely basic biscuit dough (there isn't even sugar in it) and stir it into the strawberries. Clap on the lid and let the whole thing steam until the biscuit dough turns into a soft, puffy swirl in the strawberries. Spoon it up and eat immediately.
This is a nursery-style dessert — it's barely sweet, and very soft and slurpy. It's also not all that photogenic; it slumps out of the pan and into the plate. Sure, you could dress it up: Use sugar in the biscuit dough, lemon zest in the strawberries, powdered sugar or whipped cream to finish it off. But I just didn't want any of those things. I drizzled a little milk over top, but otherwise left it plain.
There is something about the utter simplicity of barely cooked yet jammy fresh strawberries, and plain biscuit, all steamed together in one big pan. It's simple and lovely and totally delicious on a late spring morning.
Have you ever tried this, or other stovetop dumpling desserts?
• Get the recipe: Strawberry Dumpling at Gourmet
Related: Dessert Ideas With Strawberries
(Images: Faith Durand)