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Fresh berry compote with a mixed nut "brittle"

½ cup sugar
½ cup (1/4 cup) butter
3 tbsp. Grand Marnier liqueur
pinch cinnamon
pinch nutmeg
3 cups mixed fresh berries
6 lace cookies (see recipe below)
whipped cream and/or mint leaves, for garnish

Melt butter and sugar together in a large saucepan over medium heat until sugar is dissolved and mixture has a “syrupy” consistency. Turn flame to low and add liqueur, stirring with a wooden spoon until completely blended. Add spices and berries and very gently stir to coat berries with sauce. Divide warm berries among six dessert bowls. Place a lace cookie on top of each bowl of berries and garnish with the whipped cream and mint leaves. Serve warm. Makes 6 servings.

Lace Cookies

¼ cup chopped mixed nuts, your choice
¼ cup butter
¼ cup sugar
1 tbsp. Cream
11/2 tsp. Flour
½ tsp. Vanilla
¼ tsp. Chinese five spice

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare a sheet pan with parchment paper and use small ramekins to weigh down corners of paper. Otherwise, paper will curl during baking, lifting cookies and preventing them from staying round. Mix together all ingredients in a small, heavy-bottomed saucepan over low heat. Stir to mix evenly and when sugar has dissolved place teaspoonfuls of batter onto sheet pan. Try baking four cookies at a time. Bake cookies 4-6 minutes or until a nice golden color. Allow to cool and then store in an airtight container if not used within 8 hours or so; they will soften with humidity. Makes about 16 3-inch cookies.

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