A lightened, creative twist on the classic Italian dessert. These parfaits have layers of expresso mascarpone mousse, healthy dark chocolate pudding, and a lady finger almond oat crumble.
I get asked a lot where I get the inspiration for my dishes. It comes from a variety of places, sometimes old family recipes and other times new discoveries from magazines or Pinterest.
One of my greatest sources of inspiration is from watching cooking shows. I’m obsessed with shows like The Chew and Chopped. Our DVR is almost completely full because of all my cooking shows (well, and also, Moonshiners & The Walking Dead for my husband).
I love learning about new cooking techniques, how foods pair together, creative new ideas I hadn’t thought of, and tips for making classic and veery technical recipes (like soufflés or macaroons). Food, cooking, and recipe development fascinates me and I just can’t get enough of it.
My Sunday night routine consists of sipping on a good glass of wine or an old fashioned, catching up on my cooking shows, and writing down any new cooking ideas I glean from the shows.
Last Sunday, I was watching Beat Bobby Flay. This episode was a dessert inspired competition, which is my favorite because a. Bobby is less skillful in the dessert department, so he might actually lose (sorry Bobby!); b. I love love love dessert.
Quick recap on how Beat Bobby Flay works, if you have never seen it. The goal is to beat Bobby Flay, an amazingly talented famous American chef (who rarely loses). Two of Bobby’s closest friends pick two chefs to try and take down Bobby. The 2 competitors first have to go through each other using an ingredient of Bobby’s choice that they must showcase in their dish. Bobby’s friends pick the winner based on their dishes. Then the remaining chef goes head to head with Bobby, making that guest chef’s signature dish.
The chef in last episode I watched selected tiramisu as her signature dish to go up against Bobby. She took a creative spin on the dish and made it into a parfait. She also did a lady finger crumble to add texture to an otherwise textually one dimensional dessert.
Genius! I was inspired. I have actually made tiramisu parfaits in the past. But I never thought to use the lady fingers to make a crumble. My husband actually complained that the parfait needed some crunch last time I served it. This was the perfect idea to elevate this classic dish.
I, of course, also wanted to slightly lighten up this dish. So I incorporated my dark chocolate pudding, kept it low in sugar, and added almonds and oats to the crumble. It turned out delightful.
Let’s get to cooking.
First, you need to make my dark chocolate pudding. You need to make this first because the pudding needs to chill in the fridge for at least an hour.
While the pudding sets, you can make the crumble. Pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees. You want to cook the crumble at a low temperature so it can get crunchy and golden brown without burning.
In a large bowl, mix all of the crumble ingredients together. Evenly spread it out on a cookie sheet so it cooks evenly. Bake it for about 30 minutes, mixing the ingredients around every 10 minutes (to prevent burning). Once the almonds and oats are golden brown and the lady fingers slghtly crunchy, it is done.
The final step is to make the mascarpone filling. With a hand mixer or whisk, blend together the mascarpone, expresso, almond milk, maple syrup, and hazelnut liquor until it is light and fluffy. Mascarpone is basically an Italian cream cheese, but lighter, and milder in flavor than regular cream cheese. It is traditionally found in tiramisu. I prefer it to cream cheese because of its more delicate flavor and texture.
Gently fold in the coconut whipped cream. I used a store bought tub of coconut whipped cream. It is great you can find lighter, corn syrup free tubs of whipped cream at your local grocery stores now. You can also make homemade whipped cream, coconut or regular – you will need a cup of it.
Finally, you just need to assemble the parfaits. I put both the mascarpone mousse and dark chocolate pudding into separate piping bags to make it easier to get into the glass. But you can also just scoop it out with a spoon.
In a small glass or bowl, alternate layers of dark chocolate pudding, the crumble, and the mascarpone mousse. Continue this pattern until the glass it full, and all of the ingredients are gone. I ended with the marscapone filling. It should make 4-6 glasses, depending on the size of the glass.
To make the dessert complete and mimic a traditional tiramisu, dust cocoa powder on the top of each glass.
The dessert is magical. Layers of rich, decadent dark chocolate pudding, and creamy, a slightly boozy, and robust coffee flavored mascarpone mousse, and finally that crunchy, slightly sweet crumble. It all comes together for the perfect bite.
It has all of the flavors of a traditional tiramisu, but the addition of crunch and texture. After my husband took one bite, he immediately noticed the addition of the crumble and LOVED the idea.
I am so glad I discovered the idea from my fav cooking show and was able to put my own creative spin on the dessert.
Tonight, I look forward to watching more shows and finding new inspiration. Oh and of course, devouring this tiramisu.
I can’t wait to share my new creations with you soon!
Healthy Tiramisu Parfaits
A fun, healthy twist on a classic Italian dessert.
- 2 cups dark chocolate pudding find my recipe here
- 8 ounces mascarpone
- 2 ounces expresso
- 1/4 cup milk of choice I used almond
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon hazelnut liquor or kaluha
- 8 ounce whipped cream container I used a coconut whipped cream
- 1/4 cup shaved almonds
- 1/4 cup old fashioned oats
- 1 1/2 cups crushed lady fingers
- 1 teaspoon coconut sugar or brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 ounce expresso
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/2 tsp salt
First, make the dark chocolate pudding and let it set in the fridge.
Next, make the crumble. Pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees. Ina. large bowl, mix together crushed lady fingers, almonds, oats, cinnamon, coconut oil, salt and express. Pour and flatten on a greased or lined cookie sheet. Bake for about 30 minutes, slipping every ten minutes, until almond are golden brown and the crumble is crunchy.
Finally, make the mascarpone filling by using a hand mixer or whisk to whisk together the mascarpone, expresso, hazelnut liquor, and almond milk. Gently gold in the whip cream.
Assemble the parfaits by alternating layers of dark chocolate pudding, mascarpone filling, and lady finger crumble in a small glass. It should make 4-6 parfaits, depending on the size of the glass.
Serve and enjoy!