According to "The Food Lover's Companion" (the food encyclopedia Mel gave me a few years ago also available online)
"this deliciously decadent dessert is made by soaking strawberries in orange juice and curaçao or cointreau, then serving them topped with whipped cream. It's one of many dishes named after the Russian royal family by French chefs."
One of my clients asked that I modify a copycat version of the dish on Recipezaar.com to make it more healthful. Not a prob! I changed a few things and made it for myself, and guess what? It's so good! So I decided to share it with all of you. The original recipe serves 4 and the ingredients are as follows:
½ cup sour cream
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon brandy or vanilla
½ cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons sugar
4 cups fresh strawberries
This version doesn't call for soaking the berries in orange juice and orange liqueur (although it's not a bad idea). The problem with this recipe isn't the strawberries (obviously), but the cream, sour cream, and sugar. Heavy cream has 50 calories and 5 g fat (3.5 saturated) per tablespoon. Sour cream has the same calories/fat per 2 tablespoons. And then there's the sugar...18 teaspoons total which adds 270 calories...and aren't strawberries already sweet??
So that's where I made the changes. I swapped plain nonfat yogurt for the sour cream, left the heavy cream alone, and reduced the sugar to 7 ½ teaspoons. I used a 6 ounce container of Dannon All Natural plain nonfat yogurt which is ¾ of a cup instead of ½ of a cup like the original recipe...this helps "dilute" the calories in the whipped cream even further. I also increased the fruit and made 6 servings instead of 4.
You may wonder why I left the heavy cream alone...it is very high in fat after all. For some, fat-free Cool Whip would be an option, but I don't use Cool Whip. I don't think it tastes very good and its not made from anything natural like cream or milk (have you seen the commercial for Reddi-wip..."cream or oil?"). Here is the ingredient list from Cool Whip (the fat-free kind):
Ingredients: WATER, CORN SYRUP, HYDROGENATED VEGETABLE OIL* (COCONUT AND PALM KERNEL OILS), HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, LESS THAN 2% OF SODIUM CASEINATE (FROM MILK), NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR, MODIFIED FOOD STARCH, XANTHAN AND GUAR GUMS, POLYSORBATE 60, POLYSORBATE 65, SORBITAN MONOSTEARATE, SODIUM HYDROXIDE, BETA CAROTENE (COLOR).You be the judge...
*ADDS A NEGLIGIBLE AMOUNT OF FAT
I'm sticking with whipped cream lightened with nonfat yogurt.
adapted from Recipezaar.com
Makes 6 servings
6 oz container nonfat plain yogurt (I like Dannon All-Natural)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract or brandy
½ cup heavy cream
1 ½ teaspoons sugar
6 cups fresh strawberries, sliced
Mix yogurt, brown sugar, and vanilla or brandy in a small bowl.
In a separate bowl, whip cream and sugar until thick and fluffy.
Gently fold half of cream into yogurt mixture. Add the remaining cream and fold to combine.
Serve over fresh strawberries.
before – 296 calories, 18 g fat (11 g saturated), 33 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 3 g protein (exchanges: 3 ½ fat, 1 starch, 1 fruit)
after –152 calories, 8 g fat (5 g saturated), 18 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 3 g protein (exchanges: 1 ½ fat, ¼ starch, 1 fruit)