July 3, 2014

Triple Berry Fruit Salad with Vanilla Simple Syrup {Happy 4th of July!}

A beautiful mix of fresh strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries are drizzled with easy-to-make vanilla syrup to create this stunning and delicious Triple Berry Fruit Salad with Vanilla Simple Syrup.  It's perfect for your 4th of July, breakfast, brunch, or any special occasion table.


Happy 4th of July!  Well, ... actually ... happy day before  the 4th of July!  Yes, we still have a few hours to put the finishing touches on our Independence Day celebrations.  Whether that's decking out your front porch in red, white, and blue, making sure you've got just the right kind of fireworks on hand, deciding which fireworks display you're going to watch, making a run to the store for that last bit of watermelon or cold drinks, or finishing up your 4th of July celebration menu.

Well, if you're still finishing up your celebration menu, I've got the perfect easy red, white, and blue beauty for you.
With a beautiful mix of naturally-gorgeous fresh berries and drizzling of easy-to-make vanilla simple syrup, this Triple Berry Fruit Salad with Vanilla Simple Syrup is one stunning and tasty red, white, and blue treat that's ... well ... amazingly simple.


But don't let it's simplicity fool you ~ what it lacks in difficulty it more  than makes up for in flavor.

The vanilla simple syrup adds a nice sweetness to the berries that's accompanied by a wonderful hit of vanilla.  Yummy ... but not overpowering.

The simple syrup can be whipped up with a vanilla bean or with vanilla extract.  I wanted to try it both ways to see if there was a big flavor difference using the vanilla bean instead of extract.  I expected the bean to be a hands-down winner in the taste-off.  But it wasn't.  The two syrups were, to me, about tied for flavor.

There was  a flavor difference ... but a very subtle one.  The bean led to a more subtle vanilla tone in the syrup, whereas the vanilla flavor was a tad more pronounced with the extract.  I actually preferred the syrup made with the extract.

So which method to use is truly a matter of personal choice.


Want a clear syrup with more pronounced vanilla flavor?  Or, like me, don't really want to pay the price of a vanilla bean all the time?  ...  Use vanilla extract .


Want a syrup flecked with vanilla bean seeds with a bit more subtle vanilla flavor?  ...  Use a vanilla bean.

If, like me, you get some little brown pieces from the inside of the vanilla bean in your syrup that you'd rather not have there, just let the syrup sit for a little bit.  The pieces will float to the top and then you can easily skim them off.


After the syrup has cooled, drizzle some over the berries.

I think it's just beautiful how the berries glisten with the syrup.


And there you have it ~ Triple Berry Fruit Salad with Vanilla Simple Syrup.

Beautiful.  Delicious.  And ... simple.

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Triple Berry Fruit Salad with Vanilla Simple Syrup
Source:  Adapted from Books-n-Cooks

Ingredients
  • 6 to 8 c. fresh berries ~ a mix of strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries
  • 1/4 c. granulated sugar
  • 1/4 c. water
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract OR 1/2 of a vanilla bean, split open & seeds scraped
Directions
  1. IF USING VANILLA EXTRACT FOR THE SYRUP: Place sugar and water in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring mixture just to the simmer point {there will be small bubbles beginning to form}; stir until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and cool for 5 minutes. Stir in vanilla extract. Chill completely in the refrigerator.
  2. IF USING VANILLA BEAN FOR THE SYRUP: Place sugar, water, and vanilla bean seeds in a small saucepan over medium heat. Bring just to the simmer point {there will be small bubbles beginning to form}; stir until sugar is dissolved. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 7 minutes. Remove from heat a let cool slightly; then chill completely in the refrigerator.
  3. Rinse berries. Hull strawberries and cut larger ones into 2 or 3 slices.  Place berries in a bowl.
  4. Just before serving, drizzle berries with vanilla simple syrup and toss gently to coat. You may not need to use all of the syrup.
Enjoy!

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Please enjoy these other berry-licious dishes from The Kitchen is My Playground ...
Scrumptious Strawberry Cobbler

Southern Strawberry-Coconut Punch Bowl Cake

Triple Berry Punch Bowl Cake

Blueberry Salsa

Fresh Strawberry Sangria

3 comments:

  1. i love berries and eat them on a daily basis. this looks great!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Another fabulous idea from your kitchen. Looks beautiful and so inviting. Thanks for sharing this one at Weekend Potluck!

    ReplyDelete
  3. This will be so perfect when summer berries are slowly going out of season and I'm holding on to them for dear life! Pinning and can't WAIT to try, it sounds (and looks) delicious!
    (visiting from Foodie Friday)

    ReplyDelete

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