Raspberry and ricotta parfaits

100 healthy desserts

The Biggest Loser: 100 healthy desserts, 174pp.
with nutrition consultant, Dr. Trent Watson
Hardie Grant Books, Melbourne, 2012
Cooking on page 32

The Biggest Loser television series has been popular in Australia and given weight loss a high priority. So this book caters for those who want to have their dessert and eat it too.

The first 30 pages provide lots of helpful information on weight loss, healthy eating, exercise and tips on replacement foods.

This recipe, the first one to appear in the book, is a great example of swapping fattening ingredients with lower kilojoule/calorie ones. A typical parfait would include a sugar syrup, egg and cream.

raspberry and ricotta parfait

Raspberry and ricotta parfaits

250 g fresh or thawed frozen raspberries, plus extra to garnish
2 tablespoons orange juice
2 teaspoons icing sugar, plus 2 teaspoons extra
250 g (1 cup) low-fat ricotta
1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
2 tablespoons chopped toasted almonds
4 slices almond bread, to serve

toasting almonds ricotta mixture

Place the raspberries, orange juice and icing sugar in a bowl and stir to combine, then set aside to macerate for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, place the ricotta, extra icing sugar, vanilla and almonds in a bowl and stir to combine.

To serve, place one-eighth of the raspberries in the base of four small serving glasses. Top each with a dollop of the ricotta mixture. Repeat with another layer of raspberries and finish with a dollop of ricotta and some raspberries on top.

Serve with a slice of almond bread on the side. Serves 4.

860 kilojoules per serving

How it played out
After paying a whopping $10 for a teeny, tiny bottle of vanilla bean paste, I made this with 250 grams of mixed berries that were on sale.

I used regular ricotta. I have a thing about using low-fat ingredients because they can be unhealthy in other ways, such as excess sugar or salt. My trade-off is to use full-fat ingredients sparingly, but in this case I used the full 250 grams. Good grief, I was making a dessert.

And I served it up in some crystal glasses that belonged to my mother. I think my dad bought them for her in Germany.

mixed berries

This made a lovely light dessert, but it was a long-way from matching a real parfait. I’ll save it for times when everyone at the table is on a diet.

By the way, icing sugar is the same as confectioner’s sugar in the USA.

And if you’re curious about low-fat ingredients here are articles from Australia’s ABC and Britain’s BBC Good Food.


About leggypeggy

Intrepid overland traveller, keen photographer, avid cook—known to jump out of airplanes and do other silly things. Do not act my age.
This entry was posted in Biscuits/cookies, Dairy, Dessert, Fruit and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Raspberry and ricotta parfaits

  1. weggieboy says:

    Fresh fruit: you can’t miss! This sounds really refreshing, too, for a hot day.

  2. Rhonda says:

    Ummmm…should I tell you now that you can get large tubes of vanilla bean paste at Costco?

  3. Nancy says:

    This dessert is heaven. : ) We are huge raspberry fans and the sweetened ricotta and almonds are such a wonderful in-between layer for the fruit. This is so easy to make and it makes a beautiful presentation. It definitely will be a go-to dessert for just the two of us and any dinner party we plan to host. I’m placing this recipe in my Best of 2016 file. Nancy : )

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