Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Creamy Apple-cot Parfait...Featuring Stonyfield Petite Crème and Bonne Maman Preserves

I’m excited to announce that The Weekend Gourmet recently became a member of Stonyfield’s Clean Plate Club. This group of food bloggers partners with Stonyfield to create and share recipes featuring their delicious organic yogurt. This is my first time participating -- and the timing couldn’t have been more perfect! Stonyfield recently introduced their new Petite Crème, which is best described as a French cousin to Greek yogurt. What I especially love about Petite Crème is that it has all of the protein of Greek yogurt, without the strong tanginess that I can sometimes find a bit overpowering. Petite Crème is mild, silky smooth, and creamy -- and it's also low in fat. Each 5.3-ounce container averages 2.5 grams of fat and 10 grams of protein. I received a sampler of all seven varieties of Petite Crème – along with two jars of delicious, all-natural Bonne Maman preserves. Bonne Maman is produced in France and contains no artificial coloring, no high- fructose corn syrup, and no preservatives. 

I used these two items to create my Creamy Apple-cot Parfait. This comforting fruit-and-cream creation starts with a warm layer of apples cooked in a caramel-like brown sugar-butter sauce...with a bit of Bonne Maman apricot preserves added for an extra layer of flavor. The apple layer is topped with a cool and creamy top layer containing Vive la Vanilla Petite Crème, vanilla beans, and a bit more of the apricot preserves. For a bit of crunch, I sprinkled honey-glazed sliced almonds on top just before serving. If you’re really pressed for time, the apple mixture can easily be made up to a day ahead and kept refrigerated in an airtight container. Simply microwave the apples for about 30 seconds when you’re ready to assemble the parfaits. Think of this parfait as a crustless deconstructed apple pie a la mode...and grab a spoon!
Creamy Apple-cot Parfait
a Weekend Gourmet Original
Ingredients (for 2-3 parfaits):
For the apple layer:
  • 1 medium Granny Smith apple
  • 1 medium Gala apple
  • 3 tbs. butter
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/8 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 2 tbs. Bonne Maman apricot preserves
For the cream layer:
  • 1 container Vive la Vanilla Stonyfield Petite Crème 
  • ¼ cup Bonne Maman apricot preserves
  • Seeds from ½ vanilla pod OR 1 tsp. pure vanilla
  • 1/3 cup honey-glazed sliced almonds
Step 1: Place a non-stick skillet over med-high heat. Add the butter and melt. Once the butter is melted and bubbly, add the brown sugar and stir well to combine, until completely dissolved. Lower the heat to medium and add the nutmeg, cinnamon, vanilla, and preserves. Stir well to completely incorporate the preserves into the sauce.
Step 2: Peel and core the apples. Chop the apples into bite-size pieces -- approximately 1/2-inch cubes. Add the chopped apple to the skillet and stir to combine. Reduce heat to med-low, cover, and cook for 5 minutes. Uncover and cook for 5 minutes longer, until the apples are soft – but not mushy. Turn off the heat and let the apple mixture cool for 5-10 minutes.
Step 3: While the apple mixture cools, make the creamy layer. Add the Petite Crème, vanilla beans/vanilla, and apricot preserves to a small bowl. Whisk well, until the preserves are completely incorporated. To serve, layer ½ cup of the warm apple mixture in the bottom of an individual trifle dish or a stemmed wine glass. Spoon ½ cup of the creamy layer on top of the apples. Finally, sprinkle some of the glazed almonds on top.
This is an easy-to-make Fall dessert in a glass -- and the layers are so pretty! The warm apples are sweetly tart, with the apricot Bonne Maman cutting the sweetness of the brown sugar. The combination of sour Granny Smith with sweeter Gala apples works really nicely too. The creamy layer is lightly sweet -- with visible pieces of apricot from the chunky preserves. The sweet-salty almonds provide an earthy crunch that brings all of the flavors together. If you love apple pie, you’ll go crazy for these parfaits. I served these parfaits for a simple weeknight after-dinner dessert, but they would also make a nice after-school snack or weekend brunch addition. You could also use pears in place of apples if you prefer.

Disclosure: As a member of Stonyfield’s Clean Plate Club bloggers program, I received samples of Petite Crème and Bonne Maman jam. All opinions expressed are my own.

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