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|½||cup||Raw Washed Sugar|
|4||tbls||Raw Washed Sugar|
|4||tbls||Fresh Chopped Basil|
|2||tsp||Knox Unflavored Powdered Gelatin (1 packet)|
|6||sprigs||Mint Leaves (2 or 3 leaves each)|
Prep your strawberries and raspberries as needed. Removing leaves, cutting out bruises and white caps, etc.
Typically, you will loose about ¼ of the strawberries by weight when you trim them. Hence the recipe calling for four pounds of strawberries when in actuality you will need but two pounds for the purée and one for the chunks.
Place two pounds of the strawberries, ½ of the raspberries, and ½ cup of the sugar in a blender (or food processor) and purée. Strain purée through a course mesh strainer to remove seeds (or better yet, force it through a chinois, if you have one). Heat purée in a small saucepan over medium heat only until it begins to bubble. We don't need to "cook" it, just heat it. Remove from heat and stir in gelatin until dissolved. Transfer puree to fridge and refrigerate for at least 2 hours to set gelatin.
Try to sprinkle the gelatin evenly over the entire surface of the purée. If the gelatin is "piled" on the surface, or is left in assorted clumps, it will not allow enough moisture to reach the gelatin in the middle of the clump and not dissolve . . . EVER.
Meanwhile, chop remaining pound of strawberries into ¼ inch pieces. Chiffonade the fresh basil. Toss strawberries, remaining raspberries, 2T of sugar, basil and balsamic vinegar together in a medium bowl. Set aside for 1 hour to macerate.
Place cream, sour cream, vanilla, and remaining 2T sugar in a chilled bowl of a stand mixer. Beat on low speed until bubbles begin to form (30 sec to 1 min). Increase speed to medium and continue beating until beaters leave a trail, about another minute. Increase speed to high; continue beating until mixture has nearly doubled and stiff peaks form. Transfer ¼ cup whipped cream mixture into small bowl. Set aside. (for top dollop)
Remove thickened berry puree from refrigerator and whisk until smooth. Using a spatula, gently fold the thickened puree into the whipped cream, leaving streaks.
Transfer macerated berries to fine mesh strainer; shake gently to remove excess juice. Divide 2/3's of berries among 6 parfait glasses. Divide berry/cream mixture evenly among glasses, followed by remaining macerated berries. Top each glass with reserved plain whipped cream. Sprinkle with crumbled crackers. Top with sprig of Mint. Serve immediately.