Strawberry & Rhubarb Parfait with Roasted Rhubarb

Strawberry Rhubarb Parfait

Fruity, creamy, sweet and slightly tangy this dessert is the perfect make-ahead dessert for easy entertaining or for a special night in.

If you haven’t made a parfait before it is a type of frozen French dessert comprising meringue and cream. It is easier to make than a traditional custard based ice-cream and doesn’t need to be churned in an ice cream maker.

This parfait is a bit healthier as some of the cream has been replaced with low fat yoghurt. I love the slight tang from the yoghurt; it adds a little more complexity to the dish.

The yoghurt I have used is Rachel’s Wild Strawberry & Rhubarb yoghurt. I discovered this yoghurt via Mamamia’s Food Blogger Idol competition (which this post is an entry for). Rachel’s yoghurts are free of gelatine and so suitable for vegetarians. There aren’t too many flavoured low-fat vegetarian yoghurts on market so I was excited to discover this new product!

Based on a healthy low fat yoghurt and served with a side of roasted rhubarb this dessert is almost a health food! Well, almost …

Roasted Rhubarb
This may be made ahead of time and kept in the fridge until needed. The rhubarb may be served hot or cold.

1 bunch (5 stalks) rhubarb
1/4 cup caster sugar
1 vanilla bean, split with seeds scraped out
2 tbsp water

Preheat oven to 140°C.

Wash and trim the rhubarb and cut each stalk into four pieces. Place in an oven-proof dish with the sugar, vanilla bean and seeds and water.
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Cover with foil. Bake for 40 minutes. Reserve the liquid as well as the cooked rhubarb.
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Parfait

makes 8 petite serves or one large block

100g caster sugar
60ml water
2 egg whites
300g Rachel’s Wild Strawberry & Rhubarb yoghurt
300ml cream, whipped
1 tbsp Cointreau (optional)

Prepare the moulds by lining with two layers of cling film. It seems excessive, but having two layers of cling film makes it a lot easier to take it out of the mould when it is time to serve. Ensure there is enough cling film hanging over the sides to cover the top once the mould is filled.

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You may use any type of dish or tin as a mould, such as small ramekins (as pictured) to create dainty individual portions or a loaf tin to make one large block which may be sliced or scooped to serve.

Place the sugar and water in a small saucepan and heat until it reaches soft ball stage – 118°C (It is best to use a sugar thermometer to take out the guess work of this, especially if you are unfamiliar with sugar work. Please don’t get too anxious about this though! I got distracted while making mine and took it too far; to the point where it started to change to a light caramel colour and it still worked out fine.)

While the sugar syrup is heating whisk the egg whites in a standing mixer until they make soft peaks.

Once the sugar syrup has reached temperature gently pour the hot sugar syrup in a slow and steady stream down the inside of the bowl with the egg whites while the mixer is slowly on. Then continue to whisk, a little faster now, until thoroughly mixed. The eggs are now cooked and the mix will look and taste like meringue.
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Place the whipped cream, yoghurt, meringue and Cointreau (if using) in a large bowl and gently fold through until combined.
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Spoon the mix into prepared moulds, cover over with cling film and freeze for at least 4 hours or overnight.
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To serve, remove from the freezer and pull the parfait out of the mould by tugging gently on the cling film. Remove all the plastic and place on a plate. Serve with the roasted rhubarb, rhubarb sauce and, if in season, fresh strawberries.

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