Layer Upon Layer

White Chocolate & Strawberry Frozen TerrineOne of my fondest memories, and certainly something one would never guess of me, is reloading shotgun shells with my father for the weekly trip to the range. After he was through, I would collect the empty shells, put them back into the box and taken them home. My job was to sit in the garage and use the reloader to pack the empty shell with shot and gun powder. The machine would crimp the top and it was as good as new for the next weekend.

I also danced ballet, played school and enjoyed making recipes from my Strawberry Shortcake recipe book. When it came to books, I enjoyed girl stories and my dad wanted me to like science and science fiction. I did my best. I even read the man-turns-wolf story…I had to in order to read what I wanted to next!

In order to encourage my love of science, I received a rock science kit for Christmas. This had not been an item on my wish list and I wasn’t sure how to respond to this gift. I think these early years of doing tests on random rocks included in the kit as well as those in my backyard left me with a curiosity. In college, I even signed up for a geology class. Sure, it meant a science requirement but I did choose it over others!

Now, as we are driving along through the country of Peru, one thing that fascinates me is the rock layers. Throughout all of the mountains and all of the rolling hills, you see layer upon layer of rock. Sometime those layers are horizontal as if they had just happened and others are vertical or on a vertical slant. I remember learning in my geology class that these rock layers are originally horizontal but with time and movement under the earth, the layers and lines shift, move and are distorted.

Each layer represents time and change.

As I made a layered terrine this week, I experienced this very thing. Each layer represents time and change. Time had to pass as I added each layer. When I added a layer too soon, the center would be affected and the shape of the layer distorted. Time had to pass before the next layer could go on. Change in color, change in flavor. Time & change.

What do layers make you think of? Terrine ones, rock ones or otherwise?

White Chocolate & Strawberry Frozen Terrine

Yield: Serves 12

Source: Adapted from Epicurious


  • 2 3/4 cups of frozen unsweetened strawberries, thawed, drained
  • 8 ounces of good-quality white chocolate (such as Lindt or Baker's), chopped
  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 1/3 cup of water
  • 1 tablespoon of corn syrup (I used honey)
  • 4 large eggs white
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cream of tartar
  • 1 1/2 cups of chilled whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon of Grand Marnier (I forgot!)


  1. Line bottom of 9x5x3-inch loaf pan (with 7-to 8-cup capacity) with aluminum foil, extending foil over shorter ends. Puree strawberries in processor. Transfer 1 1/4 cups puree to small bowl; reserve remaining puree for another use. Stir white chocolate in top of double boiler set over barely simmering water until melted. Remove pan from over water.
  2. Combine sugar, water and corn syrup in heavy small saucepan. Stir over low heat until sugar dissolves. Increase heat; boil until candy thermometer registers 250°F, tilting pan if necessary to submerge bulb of thermometer and occasionally brushing down sides of pan with wet pastry brush, about 4 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, using electric mixer, beat egg whites and cream of tartar in large bowl until soft peaks form.
  4. Gradually add boiling syrup to whites, beating until firm peaks form and meringue is cool, about 5 minutes. Fold white chocolate into meringue.
  5. Beat cream and vanilla in large bowl until medium-firm peaks form; fold into white chocolate mixture. Transfer 4 cups white chocolate mousse to medium bowl. Fold 1 1/4 cups strawberry puree and Grand Marnier into 4 cups mousse.
  6. Spread half of strawberry mousse in prepared pan. Chill remaining white chocolate mousse and remaining strawberry mousse. Freeze strawberry layer until almost firm , about 15 minutes. (After an hour mine was not fully frozen, but that may be my freezer!)
  7. Spread white chocolate mousse over strawberry layer. Freeze until almost firm, about 25 minutes.
  8. Spread remaining berry mousse over white chocolate layer. Cover terrine with plastic and freeze overnight. (Can be prepared 4 days ahead. Keep frozen.)
  9. Uncover terrine. Cut between foil and pan side to loosen terrine. Invert onto platter. Lift off pan and peel off foil. (The original recipe serves it with a dark chocolate sauce.)


This delicious White Chocolate & Strawberry Frozen Terrine goes to Joanna at The Passionate Cook for the event Waiter, There’s Something In My…Terrine! Thankfully, she extended the deadline to January 31 or due to my slow freezer I would have never made it!

Gretchen Noelle

My love of food was cultivated early on by my family but has come alive while living in Peru. During the 12 years of living in Lima, Peru, I have also enjoyed numerous trips to other areas of the country. Here on Provecho Peru you will find Peruvian recipes in English, American favorites prepared overseas, news about Peruvian Cuisine and interesting tidbits about life in Peru.

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9 Responses

  1. slush says:

    Jaos loves strawberry ice cream. This would be right up his alley. However, terrines frighten me a tad bit. So, he probably will never taste this.

  2. thepassionatecook says:

    oh i do know what you’re talking about… driving through the austrian mountains was very similar and i always kept wondering about times past and trying to find something that had survived for thousands of years, sometimes in the form of a snail shell in a piece of shattered rock – ah! love your creation, strawberries are always great and i just wish the weather here was like the one you’re enjoying! thanks for your contribution!

  3. Karen says:

    A beautiful, stunning dessert! Really, very impressive.And how funny about filling the empty shells with gunpowder. Sounds like a very special memory.

  4. Tartelette says:

    This is gorgeous and so refreshing. Great entry!

  5. Richa says:

    d-lish! that is one gorgeous lookin’ dessert 🙂 btw, thanks for the inspiration & ur sweet words!

  6. Gretchen Noelle says:

    Laurie – face your fears girl! :)Johanna – Austria…I think I was there before I can remember! Thanks for hosting this one!Karen – thanks for your kind words!Tartelette – Thanks so much!Richa – This was not only gorgeous but very tasty as well!How To Eat…Thanks! It was a challenge but fun to conquer!

  7. Jasmine31 says:

    This looks really good. Thanx for sharing.

  8. Eva says:

    That looks wonderful! Usually I’m not a huge fan of white chocolate (prefer dark choc) but in combination with strawberries, it must be heavenly!

  9. Gretchen Noelle says:

    Jasmine – This was really tasty! You are welcome!Eva – This was an incredibly delicious combo!

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