A fool is an old-fashioned English dessert, but it never goes out of style because it’s simple, delicious, and beautiful. Plus, any fool can make it since it’s only a matter of folding a quickly cooked compote into whipped cream. A little rose water adds a floral sweetness, but the fool is lovely without it, too.
Toss the rhubarb with 1/2 cup of the granulated sugar in a 2-quart saucepan. In a small bowl, toss the strawberries with the remaining 1/4 cup sugar. Let sit, stirring each occasionally, until the sugar dissolves and juice begins to collect, about 30 minutes. Add the strawberry juice and a pinch of salt to the rhubarb, and stir to combine. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the rhubarb is falling apart, about 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the strawberries, and transfer the compote to a bowl. Refrigerate, uncovered, until cold, about 1-1/2 hours. (To speed the chilling, stir the compote over a bowl of ice water until cold, about 20 minutes.)
In a chilled metal bowl, whisk the cream and confectioners’ sugar until soft peaks form. Add the rose water, if using, and continue whipping to medium peaks. Set aside 1/3 cup of the cold compote, and fold the rest into the whipped cream just until the mixture looks streaky. Spoon into 6 glasses or dessert bowls and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving. (Refrigerate the remaining compote, too.) Serve topped with the remaining compote.
nutrition information (per serving):
11, Fat Calories
100, Saturated Fat
1, Monounsaturated Fat
32, Polyunsaturated Fat
Photo: Scott Phillips