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The Blackberry Fool – a light and refreshing classic British dessert
Perfect for entertaining, the Blackberry Fool comes together in minutes!
The fruit fool is one of the easiest desserts you’ll ever make. It’s elegant, creamy and light, and so pretty, too. Dollop this magical Blackberry Fool mixture into your prettiest stemware or clear glass dessert dish for a pretty presentation.
Why is this fruity dessert called a fool?
The fool (foole) dessert has been around for hundreds of years. The gooseberry fool was first mentioned in the 15th century and still remains popular today. It’s not completely clear why this dessert is called a fool.
Many believe the name for a “fruit fool” comes from the French word “fouler” which means to crush or smash. That makes sense since the fruit or berries are pureed for this recipe.
No matter where the name came from, or how you spell it, thrill your family with this elegant ending to a perfect meal!
Ingredients needed to make a Blackberry Fool:
You only need a few ingredients to make this easy dessert:
For the blackberry sauce:
- granulated sugar
- juice of 1 lemon
For the whipped cream:
- heavy whipping cream (or heavy cream)
- powdered sugar
- vanilla extract
Six simple ingredients. That’s it! You might think this dessert is boring or bland since it’s so easy to make. But that’s not the case here. Our Blackberry Fool has tons of lightly sweet, tart flavor. The blackberry puree has an intense flavor which plays well with the soft whipped cream.
How to make a fruit fool:
1. First, prepare the berry sauce:
Puree the blackberries in a food processor or blender. Using the back of a spoon, press the puree through a fine mesh strainer set over a medium saucepan. Discard the seeds.
Add the granulated sugar and lemon juice to the blackberry puree in the saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and gently simmer until the mixture is slightly reduced and thickened. Cool and refrigerate until needed. You should have about 3/4 cup of puree.
2. Prepare the whipped cream:
Combine the heavy cream, powdered sugar and vanilla in a well chilled bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat on low until the cream starts to thicken. Increase the speed and beat until stiff, firm peaks form. You don’t want dry peaks so be sure the whipped cream is still somewhat creamy, not clumpy.
3. Assemble the fool:
Spoon about three-fourths of the blackberry puree into the whipped cream. Gently fold the mixture together, just 3 or 4 big turns of the spatula so streaks of blackberry sauce remains visible. This is the key to a pretty fruit fool dessert.
Divide the Blackberry Fool between 6 bowls or decorative glasses. Drizzle a little of the remaining blackberry puree over the top of each fool dessert. Garnish with a few fresh blackberries and a sprig of mint, if desired.
Can the Blackberry Fool be made ahead?
The fruit portion of the fool must be made ahead of time and chilled before mixing with the whipped cream. This blackberry puree can be made up to 2 days in advance. Store in an airtight jar or container in the refrigerator until needed.
The whipped cream can be made a few hours in advance and refrigerated until needed.
I usually make the blackberry puree the day before, then make the whipped cream a few hours before serving. Assemble the fools and refrigerate for one hour before serving to give the mixture time to set.
Can you substitute other fruits for the blackberries?
Absolutely! Blueberries, strawberries, rhubarb and raspberries are all popular choices. If using seedless berries, there’s no need to process or strain the puree. Simply mash the fruit as it cooks. We love this blackberry and blueberry sauce combo for this recipe, too.
If making a blueberry, strawberry or raspberry fool, fold in a few whole or diced berries to the puree for added texture, if desired. It’s all good!
Can you use frozen blackberries for this recipe?
Yes you can use frozen berries for this fool. No need to thaw first!
How to serve the Blackberry Fool:
We often serve our fresh fruit fool with a nice shortbread cookie (like Lorna Doone) on the side. You can even crumble cookies on top, if preferred.
For the prettiest presentation, the Blackberry Fool should be served in individual size clear bowls, glasses or stemware.
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- 3 cups blackberries (12oz) fresh or frozen plus more for serving
- ¼ cup granulated sugar (55g)
- juice of 1 lemon
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream (16oz)
- ¼ cup powdered sugar (29g)
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
For the blackberries:
- Puree the blackberries in a food processor or blender. Using the back of a large spoon press the puree through a fine mesh strainer set over a medium saucepan. Discard the seeds.
- Add the granulated sugar and lemon juice to the blackberry puree. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat then reduce to medium-low. Gently simmer, stirring frequently, until thickened and slightly reduced, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat, cool and refrigerate until needed.
To prepare the whipped cream:
- Combine the cream, powdered sugar and vanilla in a medium bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat on low until it starts to thicken. Increase the speed to medium, then high, and beat until stiff, firm (not dry) peaks form. The whipped cream should still be somewhat creamy, not clumpy.
To assemble the fools:
- Gently spoon or drizzle ¾ of the blackberry puree into the whipped cream. Fold 3 or 4 turns so thick streaks of blackberry puree remain visible.
- Divide the Blackberry Fool mixture between 6 bowls or decorative glasses. Drizzle with the remaining puree, top with a few fresh blackberries and a sprig of mint, if desired.
- Serve immediately, or refrigerate for 1 hour to allow the flavors to blend.
- The blackberry puree can be made a few days in advance. Store in an airtight jar or container in the refrigerator until needed.
- The whipped cream can be made a few hours in advance. Keep refrigerated until ready to use.
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