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Wimbledon has always been synonymous with strawberries: with the tennis tournament falling in the middle of the growing season, Wimbledon and the UK’s favourite fruit go together like… well, strawberries and cream.
As well as being quintessentially British, delicious, and full of great health benefits (including helping to lower blood pressure and boost our immune systems), strawberries are deliciously versatile.
Whether you’re hosting an elegant dinner, making an indulgent dessert to tuck into while you watch the tennis, or entertaining the grandchildren, we’ve got something here for everyone to enjoy.
Game, set, and feast.
Pimms is the classic Wimbledon cocktail, but if you fancy sipping something a bit different this summer, this cooling frosé (frozen rosé) is an elegant alternative. Created by Natalie Penny, who specialises in delicious plant-based recipes (her vegan sheet-pan strawberry shortcake is another summer smasher), this drink takes moments to whip up. Edible flowers can be a little tricky to find, but if you’re hosting a summer party, it’s well worth hunting them down for that extra wow factor.
Top tip: If you have time, you can freeze the rosé wine in ice cubes trays the night before, allowing you to use fresh strawberries and less ice to make your frosé.
There are few treats we associate more with the British countryside than a warm scone with cream and jam. In this recipe, Jane Hutton – AKA The Functional Foodie – adds some fresh chopped strawberries instead of jam, balancing out the richness of her delicious scones, which have clotted cream baked right in.
Top tip: These can be made gluten-free by swapping the plain flour for your favourite GF brand.
Masterchef winner 2018 and chef-patron of fine-dining restaurant Cleaver & Wake, Laurence Henry, has created this stunning dessert to celebrate the great British strawberry. Although it takes a bit more effort to make, it’s ideal for those who enjoy trying their hand at something a little bit more sophisticated in the kitchen. “For me, Wimbledon has to be all about the strawberries,” says Laurence, “and this dish is the perfect accompaniment for your beautiful British berries.”
Top tip: For added, Wimbledon-inspired flair, freeze your parfait in a half-sphere mould, so it looks like a tennis ball on the plate.
This recipe takes a classic strawberry flan, and adds the gentle scent of geranium, for an extra British twist. It appears in Jenny Jefferies’ latest book, For The Love Of The Land II, and comes from Marion Regan of Hugh Lowe Farms, which supplies strawberries to Wimbledon.
“Growing up on a strawberry farm meant summer teatimes often revolved round a simple strawberry flan, scented with geranium leaves and piled high with home-grown strawberries and cream,” she says. “I still make this today for visitors.”
Top tip: If you don’t have any large eggs to hand, use three small ones, or two medium eggs and a small splash of milk.
When things start hotting up both on and off the tennis court, you’ll need something to cool you down – and this baked Alaska, made with clotted cream ice cream and fresh strawberries for a truly British twist, is just the thing. This recipe comes from Easy Peasy Baking, and is a show-stopping centrepiece dessert that will look gorgeous as part of any summer spread. It’s easier to put together than you might think, and vegans can enjoy it too by using vegan ice cream (we like Jude’s) and making a fluffy aquafaba (chickpea water) meringue instead of using egg whites.
Top tip: Don’t throw away the egg yolks after separating your eggs: they’re ideal for making all sorts of delicious desserts, including lemon curd, egg custard tarts, and crème brulée.
This fun twist on a classic Eton mess comes from the Three Bears Cookery Club, which helps children learn about food by teaching them how to cook simple dishes. This recipe is a sure-fire hit, and easy enough for children to help (they’ll especially love whipping the cream). And while it’s definitely a treat, adding seven fresh strawberries counts as one of their five-a-day.
Top tip: If you’ve got a group of children to entertain and aren’t keen on letting them loose in the kitchen, lay out some toppings for them to add to their sundaes instead – think berries, flaked almonds and strawberry pureé.
Written by Rosie Mullender