Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Aged Port Zabaglione (Sabayon) with Raspberries & Blueberries

In the world of tarts, pies, cobblers, and crisps, berries are the kit in the caboodle. Whether sweetened, covered in cream, or baked in pastry, summer's little 'jewels' are delicious! My boys and I have made several trips to the berry farms this year to stock up on blueberries (to freeze over the colder months), and also to pick out delicate red raspberries during their short season. Sweet, tart, and vibrant in color, in our house they are scarfed up by the handful!

After brainstorming, then listing, all sorts of fancy-pants desserts that I could make with my raspberries (mousse cakes, cheesecakes, tarts, you name it), I finally decided to go in a different direction. I tried to highlight the bold flavor of these beautiful, summer treats as simply (and easily) as possible, and ended up combining the fresh raspberries & blueberries with an Aged Port Zabaglione.
A zabaglione (also spelled sabayon) is a simple sauce with a very complex flavor. Usually made with a sweet wine like Marsala, it can almost use anything from champagne to a sweet Riesling. I decided to go with aged port because the rich flavors in each sip (chocolate, raisin, spice, and deep fruity notes! Mmm!) go so well with fresh fruit. Egg yolks, a bit of sugar, a little cream, and the port, are cooked & whisked together to create a light, airy - and indulgent - sauce for fresh berries.

Try this simple dessert that packs a big punch!

Aged Port Zabaglione (Sabayon) with Raspberries & Blueberries
adapted from Bon Appetit
Makes 6-8 servings

3 tablespoons aged port
4 large egg yolks
4 tablespoons water
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup chilled whipped cream
3-4 cups berries (raspberries & blueberries here, but blackberries would work too)

In a medium pot, heat two to three inches of water to just about a simmer. Prepare a large bowl with ice and water for an ice bath. Reserve.

Place the egg yolks, port, water, and sugar into a medium heat proof mixing bowl (making sure that when the bowl is fitted over the pot, that it doesn't touch the water, otherwise you will make scrambled eggs), and whisk to combine.

Place the bowl over the not-quite-simmering water and whisk continuously for 4 minutes, or until the mixture becomes frothy and thickens.

Once thickened, place the bowl with the egg mixture directly into the ice bath (Carefully! Don't get any water into the mix!) and continue to whisk until the sauce cools, about 3 minutes.

In a separate bowl, either with a hand mixer or with a whisk, whip the chilled cream until it reaches soft peaks (not the firm peak we typically associate with whipped cream). Fold gently into the cooled egg mixture.

Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or up to 4 hours.

To Serve

Wash & dry your berries. Portion out into serving cups or bowls.

Give the chilled Zabaglione a quick stir and spoon on top of the berries. Serve immediately. 


  1. I have never heard or even tried a sabayon before.. it looks and sounds seriously delicious. Think I have to create the recipe as I am curious to know what it tastes like!

    1. I'm glad that you like it! I had always assumed that a sabayon was super tricky, having only had it in restaurants. It is so easy to make (seriously) and was a delicious compliment to the berries. Let me know how it turns out for you!

  2. I'm so intrigued by all the fancy names :) It looks delicious! Also I think it's great you are freezing fresh blueberries ahead of time, I always wish I did that when it comes to be winter-time!

    1. This a really delicious & simple dessert! Frozen blueberries get my kids through the winter-one of their favorite foods!