Saturday, May 8, 2010

Lemon Berry Parfaits

With the arrival of Spring, fresh berries abound and should be enjoyed by all.  If you are looking for a simple, healthy dessert berries should be on your menu.  They can be prepared and served in many ways. 

As I child, I have fond memories of spending very early mornings in the strawberry patch with my mother and aunt Rose.  While I'm sure I ate more than a provided the quart containers we worked to fill, it is a very happy memory indeed. After picking we would return to Aunt Rose's kitchen to clean and process the berries.  One of my favorite foods were the berries we just sliced and sweetened.  These were left to sit until later in the afternoon when we would freeze them in small containers.  These berries were destined as a topping for the wonderful Goshen Dairy ice cream Uncle Roy would bring home regularly from his job at the dairy.

Of course there are other types of berries and now mostly we just pick them up at our local groceries.  For this simple recipe, use any good quality berries you can find and mix them to make the dessert more interesting.

Crush up a crunchy lemon snap cookie in the bottom of each serving dish. Wash and macerate the berries with sugar.  Sprinkle with a little berry flavored vodka or Contreau.  Toss about every 15 minutes while you prepare the filling.  Make a lemon filling by whipping cream with a small amount of sugar and vanilla.  When soft peaks form, fold in cool lemon curd.  Good quality lemon curd is available in most finer grocers these days, but if you the time feel free to make a batch of your own.  At this point, you can refrigerate and hold the ingredients until ready to serve.  Then top each cookie crumble with a tablespoon of lemon cream, followed by a layer of berries.  Repeat until your serving dishes are full and decorate the top with a bit of whipped cream, a fresh berry or two and any leftover cookies you may have.

It's lovely and tasty too!  Your family and friends will enjoy this light dessert.

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