This is the most glorious celebratory punch I know. The first time I had it was when my cousin
I had come early to the engagement party to help with the preparations and the first thing I noticed in the kitchen was the lovely perfume of fresh strawberries. Marion immediately showed me the large punch bowl and the strawberries marinating in the Moselle, which were responsible for the glorious aroma.
I have since served this punch for many different occasions and discovered, to my happy surprise, that what I thought to be a “lady’s drink” is appreciated by men at least as much! The optional strawberry mint ice ring makes a stunning presentation and also serves to keep the punch sparkling cold.
Although delicious any time of year, this punch is at its very best in spring and summer, during strawberry season.
Wedding showers can be as casual or formal as you wish, from pot luck to catered. But even if you bring in all the food from the outside, making this champagne punch adds a special, personal touch.
|Ice Ring (optional)|
|fresh strawberries and fresh mint leaves, for garnish||•||•||•|
|sugar, preferably superfine*|
|fresh strawberries, hulled|
*Superfine sugar dissolves more easily but fine granulated will also work with more stirring.
At least 1 hour or up to 4 hours ahead, combine the sugar and Moselle and stif to dissolve the sugar. Add the strawberries, cover tightly with plastic wrap (preferably Saran brand) and allow to sit at room temperature for at least 1 hour.
When ready to serve, unmold the optional ice ring: Dip the bottom of the mold into cold water for a few moments and invert it onto a plate. Stir the Bordeaux into the punch. Slide the ice ring into the punch and then add the champagne.
© 1992 Rose Levy Beranbaum. All rights reserved.