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Sunday, May 3, 2020

Enjoy Some Zoochberry Surprise from Black Spire Outpost for May the Fourth

by Beth Keating
May 3, 2020

May 4th is International Star Wars’ Day, and I offer, “May the Fourth Be With You.” (I heard a few of you answer, “And also with you,” didn’t I?)

For Christmas this year, my son gave me Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge: The Official Black Spire Outpost CookbookWith all this downtime for the stay-at-home quarantine, we thought we’d dig in to the cookbook and create a few dishes from off world. Getting some of the ingredients for the recipes has been a bit of a challenge with our stripped-shelf grocery stores, but one of the desserts we were successful in pulling off was “Zoochberry Surprise.” I did have to substitute plain graham crackers for the chocolate ones that were unavailable, but otherwise the recipe went off without a hitch.  It was simple to make, and delicious.

Star Wars Galaxy’s Edge: The Official Black Spire Outpost Cookbook was written by Chelsea Monroe-Cassel and Mark Sumerak, with photography by Ted Thomas. And the photography is delightful!  Even if you never make a single recipe in the book, the photos are drool-worthy, and merit a page-through just for that.  

In true Disney fashion, each recipe also comes with its own backstory, part “history” and part color commentary. It is just as much a story book as it is cookbook. Author Chelsea Monroe-Cassel gives you a tour guide’s trip through some of the businesses on Batuu before offering up recipes from the proprietors of the establishments at Black Spire. Chelsea has also written cookbooks for Game of Thrones, Overwatch, Firefly, and World of Warcraft. Marc is an Eisner and Harvey Awards nominated writer and editor who has worked with the Marvel, Star Wars, Harry Potter, and Firefly franchises. He is also credited with the books Star Wars: Droidography and Star Wars: The Secrets of the Jedi.  The cookbook is available through Amazon.  

Zoochberry Surprise

Backstory, in a nutshell? Zoochberries used to be grown on a number of worlds, but have become expensive because of differences in trade routes and a fall-off in harvest locales. The cook has substituted other less expensive berries, and no one can tell the difference (hence the more mundane strawberries and blueberries).

1 1/2 cups chocolate graham cracker crumbs
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted

10 ounces mixed berries, such as blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries, plus more for garnishing
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1 cup heavy cream
1 pound cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
Dash of vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice 

1.  Line an 8-inch-square baking pan with aluminum foil, leaving enough overhang to help pull the dessert out of the pan when you are ready to serve.
2.  To make the crust: In a medium bowl, combine the ingredients for the crust. The mixture should be a little wet, and hold its shape when squished. Press this layer into the bottom of the pan.
3.  To make the sauce: Combine all the ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium heat and cook until the berries have broken apart, about 15 minutes. Strain into a small bowl and refrigerate to chill.
4.  To make the filling: In a small bowl, beat the heavy cream until it forms stiff peaks, then set aside. In a medium bowl, beat together the cream cheese, powdered sugar, vanilla and lemon juice. To this mixture, stir in one-third of the whipped cream, then gently fold in the remaining whipped cream. Pour this mix over the crust in the pan, then set aside. Once the berry sauce is cool, gently pour it over the cream layer. Using a bamboo skewer or a butter knife, make swirled designs in the top of the dessert. Refrigerate for at least two hours. When ready to serve, gently lift out of the pan and cut into squares. Garnish with berries.

Beth Keating is a regular contributor to DisneyBizJournal.

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