Thursday, October 13, 2011

Raspberry Cream Parfait

No my raspberries are not really that bright and beautiful but they do taste that good.

I'm having so much fun with all the new picture editing sites. You can make photos look old, grainy, pop with color...pretty much anything you want.

I took over my husband's new iPhone this past weekend when we went to San Francisco for Fleet Week. Of course I downloaded a bunch of photo apps to play with and as you can see I had a great time taking pictures of big ships and airplanes flying over our heads.

Anyway, back to dessert. Try taking just one bite of this one.

I love mascarpone, cream, raspberries and sugar so I put them all together to form this lovely parfait. With a few bites you get sweet, creamy, a bit of tartness from the raspberries and crunch from a cookie. A perfect bite!

When you create a dessert, the more textures and flavors you can combine together - meaning crunchy, sweet, sour, salty, etc..., the more tantalizing the dessert will be on your taste buds.

This one is rich so if you have some small glasses or even miniature dessert glasses, use them. You only need a few bites to enjoy this dessert. 

You can whip up this up in no time and even make it ahead of time. Strawberries would be really good used here - really any berry. I actually got this idea from a dessert I used to make with strawberries and mascarpone. Mascarpone is so good sweetened and with fruit. It's an Italian cheese similar to cream cheese. You should be able to find it in any grocery store but if not substitute light cream cheese. 

I added a crushed amaretti cookie to the top so that you get a bit of crunchiness. You can use any kind of hard, crunchy cookie.

Raspberry Cream Parfait

3 cups raspberries + a few extras for garnish - frozen or fresh
1/4 cup + 3 tablespoons sugar or sugar substitute like Ideal
8 oz mascarpone cheese
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon Chambord (raspberry liquor)or substitute 1 teaspoon vanilla
3-4 amaretti cookies, crushed
Fresh mint sprigs, garnish (optional)

In a small saucepan over medium heat, add 2 cups of raspberries, 3 tablespoons sugar, and 1 tablespoon water (if using frozen berries - if using fresh - 2 tablespoons water). Stir to combine. Let cook until berries break down and mixture thickens about 10-15 minutes, stirring often. Taste to see if raspberries are sweet enough for you - you can add more sugar if you prefer them to be sweeter. Turn off heat and add additional cup of raspberries and stir gently to combine.

In a medium mixing bowl, add mascarpone, 1/4 cup sugar, and liquor. Mix well. In another bowl, whip heavy whipping cream until stiff peaks form. Gradually fold cream into the cheese mixture.

In dessert glasses, add a large heaping tablespoon of raspberries. Add a heaping tablespoon of the cream mixture. Add another heaping tablespoon of the raspberries. This part is really up to you as to how many layers you want. Depending on how big your dessert glasses are you'll have to adjust accordingly. The goal is to layer each so you get both in a single bite - and it really looks pretty especially with a fresh raspberry on top and a sprig of mint.  Serves 6-8.