Popping in to say hello with a super quick and easy weekend dessert: the loveliest mixed berry parfaits that are sweet and decadent and also just so happen to be vegan and gluten free. This time of year, when the unrelenting heft of the Southern summer begins to creep in, punctuating perfectly gorgeous spring days with thunderous downpours and thicker-than-bootstrap-molasses humidity, I gravitate towards this sort of simple, fresh fruit-based dessert. If for no other reason than it requires little to no cooking. No oven, no baking, little time to labor over in the kitchen, which, wouldn’t you know it, is consistently the hottest part of our house. And then, of course, there is the incredible nature of peak season berries…
I’m sure you’ve come across coconut whipped cream which seems to have taken the internet by storm. It’s a great alternative to traditional whipped cream for those of us who choose to limit or omit dairy. I’m not completely dairy free – but I do have a moderate intolerance to dairy milk, so I try to limit my intake and find (delicious) alternatives.
Enter coconut milk. The coconut “cream” is separated from the coconut water (which happens naturally when refrigerated overnight), and then is whisked to high heaven, taking on the texture and consistency of traditional whipped cream. Sweetened with a little sugar and dashed with a bit of vanilla, and coconut whipped cream feels (and tastes) just as indulgent as the “real” stuff.
Top with seasonal, quick-macerated berries and things get really. really. good.
Wishing you a happy and delicious weekend!
- 1 can full fat coconut milk, refrigerated overnight
- 2 tbsp powdered sugar
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1-1/2 cups coconut whipped cream
- 1 lb strawberries, hulled and quartered
- 1 pint raspberries
- 1 pint blueberries
- 1-2 tbsp granulated sugar, to taste
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- Refrigerate the can of coconut overnight. Carefully open the can and scoop the thick, white coconut chunk that has risen to the top into a chilled medium-sized mixing bowl. Save the remaining coconut water at the bottom for another time.
- Using a hand mixer, mix the coconut on high speed for about 20-30 seconds, until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and blend on high speed for a minute or two until light and creamy. Stir in the vanilla and blend to combine. Store refrigerated in an air-tight container until ready to use. May be made up to two days in advance. If not using immediately, whisk before serving.
- Add the berries, sugar and lemon juice to a mixing bowl and stir to combine. Let sit for at least 10 minutes.
- Divide the coconut whipped cream and berries among 4-6 glasses, creating layers with each as desired. Serve immediately.