Monday, December 06, 2010

Chocolate-Cranberry Parfaits

With my parents around this weekend, I wanted to create something for dessert that would be light but rich tasting.

Enter the good folks at Cooking Light!

Let me express this in terms of an equation:

Good quality chocolate


Sugared fresh cranberries


Chocolate and cranberry parfait with mascarpone.

Did I mention that this is a recipe from Cooking Light?

Chocolate-Cranberry Parfaits


1 1/3  cups  granulated sugar, divided
1  cup  water
1  cup  fresh cranberries
1/2  cup  sparkling white sugar or turbinado sugar
3  tablespoons  cornstarch
1/4  teaspoon  salt
2 1/2  cups  fat-free milk, divided
2  large egg yolks
1  teaspoon  vanilla extract
4  ounces  semisweet chocolate, chopped
1  cup  frozen fat-free whipped topping, thawed
1/4  cup  mascarpone cheese


1. Combine 1 cup granulated sugar and 1 cup water in a small heavy saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Bring to a simmer; remove from heat. Combine the sugar syrup and cranberries in a small bowl. Cover and chill for 4 hours.

2. Drain cranberries in a colander over a bowl, reserving liquid for another use, if desired. Place sparkling sugar in a shallow dish. Add cranberries, rolling to coat. Spread sugared cranberries in a single layer on a baking sheet; let stand at room temperature 1 hour or until dry.

3. Combine remaining 1/3 cup granulated sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a large bowl, stirring well. Combine 1/2 cup milk and egg yolks in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Heat remaining 2 cups milk in a medium heavy saucepan to 180° or until tiny bubbles form around edge (do not boil). Stir egg yolk mixture into cornstarch mixture. Gradually add half of hot milk to sugar mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add egg yolk mixture to pan; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly with a whisk. Remove from heat. Add vanilla and chocolate, stirring until chocolate melts. Spoon pudding into a bowl; place bowl in a large ice-filled bowl for 15 minutes or until pudding cools, stirring occasionally. Cover surface of pudding with plastic wrap; chill 20 minutes.

4. Combine whipped topping and mascarpone in a bowl, stirring until well blended. Spoon about 1/3 cup pudding into each of 8 bowls or footed glasses; top each serving with about 3 tablespoons mascarpone mixture and about 2 tablespoons cranberries.

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