Growing up, desserts weren't part of my vocabulary, it was just what I saw on TV. The all-American families with the all-American children who's scolding meant not getting dessert. Cookies, cake, ice cream; those were things that I got as a special treat or when I could sneak them in. In my family (I think, in most Asian families?), fruit is served after dinner. My mom would grab a handful of apples, a paring knife, and a large plate. She would peel the apple in one continuous peel, to my amazement, and give us a plate of apple slices. This was dessert in my life, so its not a surprise that I prefer fruit desserts and nothing that's too rich or too sweet. Wellll, maybe once in a while.
When I spotted this napoleon recipe from Lottie & Doof, I got inspired to do a variation by making ginger shortbread and serving it with un-mascerated raspberries. It's a simple dessert and easy to pull off for a dinner party because you can prep everything anywhere from a day or two before. The fancy look of it makes everyone ooh and ahh, little do they know how easy it was to put together...
1/2 cup of unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon cloves
1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
Gingery Crème Fraîche
1 cup crème fraîche
1 tablespoon chopped candied ginger
1 tablespoon honey
Pint of Raspberries
Sift together flour, salt, sugar, ground ginger, and cloves in a small bowl. In a large bowl, cream butter until fluffy, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add freshly grated ginger to the creamed butter. Add confectioners' sugar to the butter mixture and continue to beat, about 2 additional minutes. Beat in flour mixture, on low, scraping as necessary, until fully incorporated. Flatten dough into a disc shape and wrap, chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.
While the dough is chilling, make the créme fraîche by whipping the créme fraîche and honey until you get soft peaks. Fold in candied ginger and refrigerate up to 2 hours.
Preheat oven to 300F. Roll out dough in between two pieces of parchment until about 1/4 inch thick. Using cookie cutters of your choice (I used a 3-inch square cutter), cut out your shapes and place on a parchment lined baking sheet 1-inch apart. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until golden brown.
Assemble as desired. I chose to make them into sandwiches meant to be eaten with forks.