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Author Notes: If I'm not making jam, I'm loathe to cook strawberries. Parfaits are my favorite way to fancy up the raw fruit for entertaining. In this recipe, strawberry slices are layered with a vanilla-infused mixture of mascarpone and cream, then topped with a loose but crunchy almond crumble. Elegant doesn't get much easier than this. —Rivka
For the Strawberries and Cream
- 2 pounds strawberries, hulled, rinsed, and sliced
- 8 ounces mascarpone cheese
- 1 cup whipping cream
- 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
For the Almond Crumble
- 4 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/3 cup coarsely chopped almonds
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 pinch salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- Preheat the oven to 350. Toss the strawberries with the two tablespoons sugar, and set aside to macerate.
- Put all ingredients for crumble in a small bowl, and use your fingers to combine ingredients. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes, until butter becomes firm.
- Meanwhile, make the mascarpone cream: combine mascarpone, sugar, and vanilla using an electric or stand mixer until light and fluffy. In a separate bowl, whip cream until it forms soft peaks. Fold half into mascarpone to lighten mixture, then fold in the other half.
- Line a small rimmed sheet pan with tin foil or parchment paper, and sprinkle hardened crumble on to pan. You should have some big clumps, some smaller bits, and some crumbs. Bake 13-17 minutes, until golden. Set aside to cool.
- When ready to serve, assemble 8 parfait glasses (bowls will also work). Start with a layer of strawberries, then a layer of cream, and finally a sprinkling of the crumble. Alternately, put two layers of each into every glass for a total of 6 layers in each glass. Serve immediately.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Strawberries