For the longest time, I’ve wanted to make a parfait with pretzels in it, 'cause we all need a bit of crunchy-salty goodness in our lives. This flavour combo of creamy hazelnuts with a touch of cocoa and the juicy tartness of fresh strawberries is way too good! The whole thing takes about 40 minutes to make and it’s dairy- and wheat-free!
- 2 400 ml cans full-fat coconut milk, chilled in the fridge overnight
- ¼ cup hazelnut butter
- 1 tbsp Dutch cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp agave syrup
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup gluten-free pretzels (see Note)
- a bunch of fresh strawberries, washed, hulled, quartered
- crushed hazelnuts, to top (optional)
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Chilling time overnight
To make the hazelnut mousse, open your chilled cans of coconut milk (don’t shake them!) and carefully scoop the top solid layer into a bowl. You can discard the leftover liquid or you can use it in your smoothies.
Add the hazelnut butter, cocoa, agave syrup and vanilla to the coconut milk solids and whisk with an electric mixer until smooth and fluffy, about 5 minutes. (Tip: stop whisking when it looks like buttercream. If, for some reason, it looks like it has split, just let the mix warm up a bit at room temp and whisk again.) Place in the fridge for a few minutes to cool.
While the hazelnut mousse cools down, crush the pretzels using a food processor or whack them by hand until they have a coarse meal consistency. Set aside.
Assemble! Place the chilled hazelnut-mousse mix in a piping bag (you can skip this step and use a spoon instead, but seriously, why wouldn’t you pipe it?). Layer your ingredients in 4 x 290 ml jars: first add a thin layer of crushed pretzels, then scoop or pipe in some hazelnut mousse, add strawberries on top and repeat until you fill the glasses. Top with crushed hazelnuts for an extra nutty touch. Serve and eat right away.
• My pretzels were also dairy-free, but if you ain’t a diva like us, just use regular ones.
• Don’t let the parfaits sit at room temperature for too long or the mousse will not be mousse-y (it will still taste awesome though).
• I would avoid assembling them too far in advance as the pretzels may get soggy. A few hours in the fridge is okay.
• You can substitute the hazelnut butter for any other nut butter.
Recipe from Artful Desperado by Gabriel Cabrera, with photographs by Gabriel Cabrera.