I know it’s winter here in Australia, and we’re all craving lovely warming puddings, but yesterday was such a lovely day. Despite the cold morning you could have been forgiven for thinking it was summer, so I decided I wanted to celebrate it with these beautiful Strawberry Cheesecake Parfaits.
I’ve not so patiently been waiting for strawberry season to start here in Queensland, and when we were driving home from the Noosa Food and Wine festival on the weekend and I saw one of the strawberry farms open I just had to get some. I didn’t have a plan for what I’d make with the strawberries, I’d just been craving strawberries for so long I was a bit like a child in a lolly shop and ended up buying 1 kilogram of strawberries. With half chopped and tucked away in the freezer for a future recipe, I sliced the remaining fresh strawberries for my Strawberry Cheesecake Parfaits.
The cheesecake parfaits are easy to assemble, and if you don’t feel like going to the trouble of making a crumble feel free to substitute in crushed biscuits, but given it’s winter, and crumbles are my favourite winter dessert I just couldn’t resist the allure of the combination of smooth creamy cheesecake and crunchy crumble.
- STRAWBERRY SYRUP:
- 150g of caster sugar
- 60ml of water
- 4 large strawberries, diced
- ⅓ cup of plain flour
- 60g of butter, chopped
- 2 tbs of brown sugar
- 1 tbs of white sugar
- 3 tbs of rolled oats
- 2 tbs of flaked almonds
- MACERATED STRAWBERRIES:
- 400g of strawberries, sliced
- 1 tbs of sugar
- 2 tsp of Cointreau (optional)
- 400g of cream cheese
- 250g of mascarpone cheese
- Strawberry syrup
- Begin by making the crumble. Preheat the oven to 180 celsius (350 fahrenheit). In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment combine all of the ingredients and turn on to the lowest speed. Mix until the butter resembles the size of peas. Pour the mixture onto a baking tray lined with baking paper and bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden. Set aside to cool and use your fingers to crumble the mixture. Store in a container until ready to use.
- For the strawberries combine the sliced strawberries, sugar and cointreau in a bowl and cover and refrigerate for a couple of hours.
- To make the strawberry syrup place a smal saucepan over a medium heat and add the sugar and water and stir until the sugar is disolved. Bring to the boil and then reduce to a simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the strawberries. Cover and set aside for 30 minutes to infuse before blending in a food processor.
- To make the cheesecake place the cream cheese, mascarpone and strawberry syrup in a food processor and process until smooth.
- To assemble alternately layer the macerated strawberries (along with some of the syrup from the strawberries) with the cheesecake mixture followed by the crumble mixture ending with the cheesecake mixture. Top with extra strawberries to decorate.
- Serve immediately if you’d like the crumble to remain crunchy.