Because of their health benefits, flavor and overall appeal, strawberries
add vibrant color to almost any kind of salad. Not only that, they can add depth and
sweetness to enhance more traditional salad dressings.
Strawberry Cream Parfait
This is a layered dessert consisting of fresh strawberries, crisp meringue pieces (or store-bought Amaretti cookies), and a whipped mascarpone cream. Use parfait glasses or a simple drinking glass to present this dessert—anything that will show off the contrasting layers.
Ingredients and Preparation
Step 1: Meringues—make ahead (If using Amaretti you will need about one dozen cookies. Skip ahead to Step 2)
¼ cup + 2T granulated sugar
1/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 large egg whites
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
- With an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites on medium-low speed until frothy. Increase to medium-high speed for a stand mixer, high speed with a handheld mixer, and whip until soft peaks form (peak holds shape when whip is lifted and held upside down). Add ¼ cup granulated sugar and continue to whip until stiff, glossy peaks form.
- By hand, using a spatula, gently fold in the remaining 2T granulated sugar and the confectioners’ sugar.
- Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Using a pastry bag with a no. 802 tip, or an opening about ¼ inch in diameter, pipe rows of meringue the length of the tray. They can be very close together and do not need to be perfect—they will not expand in the oven.
- Put meringues in oven and immediately turn oven off.
- Bake the meringues until dry, about 8 hours or up to overnight, and store tightly wrapped. If meringues become soft or sticky, return to oven on very low heat for about 20 minutes or until dry.
Step 2: Mascarpone cream
4 ounces Mascarpone cheese
1 ½ cups Heavy whipping cream
1 t Vanilla extract
1 Vanilla Bean, seeds only (or add 1 additional teaspoon extract)
2 T Sugar
- Using a stand mixer or handheld mixer, whip all ingredients on medium speed for about 30 seconds, then increase speed to high. Whip until mixture holds soft peaks, making sure not to overwork the mixture.
Step 3: Prepare strawberries
3 baskets strawberries
Sugar and salt to taste
Hull strawberries. Cut into ½ inch pieces.
- Toss berries in sugar and salt to taste—approximately 2 T and ¼ t, respectively.
Step 4: Assemble parfaits—right before serving
- Place about a heaping tablespoon of mascarpone cream in each of 6 glasses—enough to fully cover the bottom.
- Layer about ¾ cup of the prepared strawberries on top of the cream.
- Pull meringues from parchment—it’s ok if they break. Break them into ½-1 inch pieces and sprinkle on top of the strawberry layer. Use just enough to cover the berries.
If using Amaretti, open cookies and break into large pieces, spreading over the berries. Use about 1 ½ cookies for this layer, and save the remaining half for garnish.
- Place another heaping tablespoon of cream over the meringues. Use a spoon or your fingers to spread it and create an even layer.
- Finish by sprinkling a few more meringue pieces (or Amaretti) on top. Serve immediately.
Other Strawberry Dessert Recipes You May Enjoy
- Strawberry Angel Pavlovas
- Strawberry Shells
- Strawberry Macaroon Napoleans
- Semolina Budino with Strawberries
- Strawberries in Bubbles of Snow
- Strawberry Trifle
- Brie Cheese & Strawberry Puff Pastry "Ravioli" with Chocolate Sauce
- Strawberries & Cream Bread Pudding
- Indulgent, Low-fat Chocolate Mousse
- Strawberry Cloud Dessert
- Cream Puffs Filled with Strawberries and Mascarpone