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Blueberry Amaretto Parfaits

This dessert capitalizes on the natural affinity between blueberries and almonds. Layers of crushed amaretti cookies, almond praline, Amaretto custard and fresh blueberries make a gorgeous and super-delicious presentation.

You can make the components of this dessert several days ahead of time and assemble the parfaits the day you'll serve them (or no more that 1 day ahead). Instead of serving the parfaits in individual goblets, you can also make this lovely dessert in a trifle bowl, if you prefer.

8 Servings

Ingredients

2 0.33333 cup

heavy (whipping) cream, divided

4

egg yolks

⅓ cup

granulated sugar

1 ½ tsp

vanilla paste

2 Tbsp

Amaretto or other almond-flavored liqueur (plus extra for serving)

1 cup

granulated sugar

1 ½ cup

sliced almonds

4 oz

amaretti cookies, roughly crushed

1 carton

Earthbound Farm Organic Blueberries (fresh, not frozen)

Directions

To make the Amaretto custard, place 1 cup of the heavy cream in a medium-size saucepan and bring it to the start of a simmer over medium heat.

Meanwhile, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar and vanilla paste. Add the hot cream in a very slow, steady stream, whisking constantly. (Don’t add the hot liquid to the egg mixture too quickly, or the heat will cook your eggs.) Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the custard thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from the heat and transfer to a bowl. Stir in the Amaretto and let the custard cool. Press a piece of plastic wrap or wax paper directly against the surface of the custard and refrigerate until thoroughly chilled. The custard can be made up to 4 days in advance.

To make the almond praline, line a half-sheet baking tray with a piece of parchment paper or a Silpat liner. Spread the almonds in a single layer and set aside. Combine the sugar and 1/2 cup of water in a small pan. Place over medium-high heat and stir until the sugar dissolves, then continue cooking it  without stirring until the syrup turns a deep caramel color. Immediately pour the syrup over the almonds and allow the praline to cool completely. Once hardened, break the praline into small pieces, saving 8 long shards for garnish. The praline can be stored, covered, at room temperature for several days (if you live in a humid climate, however, it’s best to make the praline within a day of serving).

The day you plan to serve the parfaits, whip the remaining cup of heavy cream to stiff peaks. Carefully fold the whipped cream into the Amaretto custard. (This step can also be done up to a day in advance.)

To assemble the parfaits, place a few blueberries in the bottom of each goblet (we like martini glasses) and sprinkle with a tablespoon of amaretti crumbs. Splash a teaspoon or two of Amaretto over the crumbs. Next, add a dollop or two of the custard, then top with a layer of blueberries and a liberal sprinkling of praline pieces. Repeat with the custard, blueberries and praline. To serve, garnish each goblet with one of the long shards of praline and drizzle the top of the parfaits with a bit of Amaretto. The assembled parfaits can be covered and refrigerated for up to a day before serving.

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