Word of Mouth: Coulis

Coulis (coo-lee), noun: A dessert sauce made of pureed fruit that is just thin enough to be poured. The word coulis is actually derived from the French verb couler, which means to run! More details and a recipe after the jump...

A coulis is typically not cooked or mixed with many other ingredients - though this "rule" is often bent or broken by our modern chefs! The point is to highlight the freshness and flavor of a single fruit.

Lemon juice is often added to enhance the fruit flavor and preserve the color. Other liqueurs can also be added to enhance flavor and thin out the puree if necessary. If the fruit is overly tart or under-ripe, sugar can be added. In this case, the puree is usually briefly cooked to melt the sugar.

Coulis are also traditionally very smooth. After pureeing, the fruit is strained through a tamis to remove any fibrous particles and seeds.

You can serve coulis as a compliment to most desserts (or breakfasts!) - over ice cream or cakes, folded into whipped cream, or mixed with gelatin to form a fruit gelée.

Fruit Coulis

1 pound fresh fruit
1 - 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar

Wash all fruit. Peel any fruit with a peel, cut the fruit into large chunks, and remove any large seeds or pits. Puree the fruit in a blender or food processor until smooth and uniform. You may need to stop and redistribute the fruit in the bowl of the blender once or twice.

Strain the fruit to remove any fibrous bits and seeds. Add lemon juice 1 teaspoon at a time, tasting between additions, until you like the flavor. If the fruit is very tart, add the sugar and cook in a pan over medium heat until the sugar has melted and the coulis is smooth.

Related: Why Not? Eating Fruit Desserts for Breakfast

(Image: Flickr member avlxyz licensed under Creative Commons)