*Disclaimer: I am a 2016 Ambassador for the California Strawberry Commission, however all opinions, experiences and enjoyment of strawberries are completely my own!
Baking is not my forte, so when it comes to desserts, I go for fresh, colorful and easy-to-assemble recipes. Lately, my go-to desserts are parfaits. Almost anything layered in clear glasses makes for a fun and impressive presentation! When we made this Strawberry-Orange Angel Food Parfait in my monthly cooking class, my clients kept commenting on how fresh and beautiful it looked--as pretty as something they'd be served in a fancy restaurant!
Something significant I learned while working alongside several amazing chefs during my food service rotations as a dietetic intern in Dallas, TX was that delicious, beautiful dishes don't have to be complicated. Fresh, seasonal ingredients were key factors to some of the most impressive desserts I saw created in the kitchens of high-end resorts, spas and restaurants. They were also among the simplest to pull together...like this one!
When we talk about delicious, beautiful and healthy foods, fresh fruits like California Strawberries are always a perfect choice. We happen to be right in the middle of strawberry season and May is National Strawberry Month! What better way to wrap-up this important food observance than with this fantastic recipe? I've paired sweet, juicy strawberries with oranges, which not only add a pop of color, they kick-up the amount of immune-boosting vitamin C, flavonoids (natural plant chemicals that have antioxidant properties) and fiber in each serving. Mix in some freshly grated ginger root and mint leaves for some zing and layer this combo over creamy, protein-rich Greek yogurt flavored with a splash of fresh orange juice, a dash of ground cinnamon, naturally sweet honey and more strawberries! All of this sits on top of light and fluffy cubes of angel food cake. Perfecto!
Before you run-off and make this tasty recipe, here are a few fun strawberry facts to check out:
- Only 8 strawberries counts as a single serving of fruit and this has twice the fiber as a single serving of grapes (16 grapes = 1 fruit serving).
- Recent research found that people who followed a flavonoid-rich diet, including brightly colored vegetables and fruits like strawberries, experienced the least amount of weight gain over a four year time frame*
One more fun fact: I created a great little recipe tutorial video for the California Strawberry Commission. Click on video below recipe to check it out!
*Study: Dietary flavonoid intake and weight maintenance: three prospective cohorts of 124 086 US men and women followed for up to 24 years: http://www.bmj.com/content/352/bmj.i17
Strawberry-Orange Angel Food Parfait
Recipe by: Christy Wilson, RD
Serves: 6 parfaits
Total time: 25-30 minutes (15 minutes prep, 10-15 minutes to chill)
2 cups strawberries, cleaned, hulled and cut into bite sized pieces
3 medium naval oranges, segmented (1 cup segments)
2 tablespoons chopped mint
½ teaspoon grated peeled fresh ginger
2 cups Greek style plain yogurt
3 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice
3 cups angel food cake, cubed (several grocery stores sell this already made!)
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
In a medium bowl toss together 1 ½ cups strawberries, orange segments, mint and ginger. Set aside.
Take remaining ½ cup strawberries and place into food processor or blender and pulse until roughly chopped. Set aside.
In a separate bowl, mix yogurt, honey and orange juice, cinnamon and chopped strawberries together until blended.
In short clear glasses layer ½ cup angel food cake, 1/3 cup yogurt mixture and about 1/3 cup fruit mixture. Garnish with mint.
Nutrition Facts per serving: 1 parfait
Calories: 150, Total fat: 0 gr; Saturated fat: 0 gr; Trans fat: 0gr; Cholesterol: 3gr; Sodium: 180mg; Total Carbohydrate: 30gr; Dietary Fiber: 2gr; Sugar: 16gr; Protein: 10gr; Vit A: 2%; Vit C: 80%; Calcium: 15%; Iron: 2%