Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Pastry Cream Parfaits

I have a certain affinity for cream puffs. I decided that the filling of cream puffs would make a great dessert parfait. As you know, it is the beginning of Strawberry season! In the perfect season for perfect fruit I created these parfaits.

Don't get excited yet, they were good, but they had a texture that just wasn't right. It was like a super thick pudding--much like tapioca except vanilla flavored. I will be revising my recipe and remembering that pastry cream belongs with pastries, not alone. Too thick in a parfait.

I have never successfully made thick custards before (you may recall the chocolate cream pie), this was an exception!! I had no trouble pulling this custard together despite my nerves. I used a recipe from Epicurious for the pastry cream. Note that the cream has to cool for at least 3 hours, so start early.

1 recipe pastry cream
assorted berries
4 smallish glass dishes or parfait glasses (these are candle holders that hold a single tea-light)
4 graham crackers, crushed

1. Make pastry cream, let cool for at least 3 hours in the fridge.
2. Later, prepare glass dishes.
3. layer first graham crackers, then pastry cream, then berries, then pastry cream, berries, and finally top with a few graham cracker crumbs and berries. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

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