If I had to pick a favorite dessert category (luckily I don’t), it might have to be parfaits. They are easy to make and hard to screw up. There are about a billion possible variations: ice cream parfaits, fruit parfaits, granola parfaits, I’m even toying with an idea for a savory parfait. They have textural contrast, with creamy elements and crunchy elements, and many of them are raw without even trying. They lend themselves well to rawification too, since the structure is pretty much taken care of by the glass. They are really fun to put together, and (almost) always look beautiful.
This parfait is a deconstructed version of pineapple upside down cake: sweet cherries, caramelized pineapple, pineapple cream, and cake bits all layered together. Even though it tastes like pineapple upside down cake, I don’t suggest flipping it right side up.
The caramelized pineapple is divine. A little coconut sugar and an hour in the dehydrator can do wonders for pineapple. If you don’t have a dehydrator, you could just let the pineapple and coconut sugar meld together and get all juicy for an hour in the fridge. The cake bits are made from raw rolled oats, a new ingredient I’ve been using and loving lately.
Pineapple Upside Down Parfait
3 cups chopped pineapple
1 tbsp coconut sugar
1/3 cup pitted cherries
1/2 cup raw rolled oats
2 tsps agave nectar
1-2 tsps pineapple juice (just squeeze the chopped pineapple a bit)
1/8 tsp salt
- Toss the pineapple chunks with the coconut sugar.
- Spread the pineapple out on a lined dehydrator tray and dehydrate for 1 hour at 115 degrees. Alternatively you could just place the coconut sugar-covered pineapple in the fridge for an hour for a chilled option.
- Meanwhile make the cake bits. Grind the raw oats in the food processor until crumbly. Pour into a bowl. Add the agave nectar, 1 tsp of pineapple juice, and salt. Mix with a fork until clumps begin to form. If it is too dry add another tsp of pineapple juice. Set aside.
- Remove the pineapple from the dehydrator. Place half of the pineapple in the blender and blend on medium-high until smooth.
- Layer into your parfait glass – cherries first, then pineapple chunks, pineapple cream next, and top with cake pieces.