Layers of creamy homemade pudding, juicy ripe strawberries and sweetened whipped cream create a gorgeous, irresistible dessert. These Moscato Pudding Parfaits are infused with lemon zest, vanilla and sweet Moscato for the perfect adult indulgence.
Moscato Pudding Parfaits
We have an extra mouth to feed on Sunday nights. Our oldest lives only a couple miles away and has an open invitation to dine with us anytime, but Sunday is pretty much a given. So there must be dessert.
That 20-something male (and his high metabolism) helps devour many of the sweet treats that could make this skinny chick not so svelte! I’ve used Moscato to poach fruit ( Riesling was also fabulous for poached peaches), but I was intrigued by the idea of a wine pudding. I was hoping the beer drinking men in the family would approve!
National Moscato Day
Just like salt enhances the flavor of food, alcohol does, too. That’s why so many sauces are deglazed with wine. It gives them that je ne sais quoi you tend to find in restaurant dishes, but not necessarily at home.
The Moscato added a depth of flavor that took these Moscato pudding parfaits from ordinary to something special. The family gave it their seal of approval, too. Note that the alcohol in this recipe will evaporate slightly as it’s stirred into the luscious custard, but I’d still reserve this dessert for the over 21 crowd.
And there’s another fun reason to whip up this scrumptious layered dessert–National Moscato Day is next Saturday, May 9. I definitely prefer light bodied, crisp fruity wines, like Moscato, so I know what I’ll be uncorking next weekend! It’s the perfect way to usher in the warmer temps.
Moscatos are the quintessential beverage for transitioning into summer. While you have your bottle open, I’d suggest reserving a wee bit for these sublime parfaits.
- 8 ounces fresh strawberries, sliced
- 2 tablespoons sugar, or to taste
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons corn starch
- Tiny pinch of salt
- 1 cup whole milk, divided
- 4 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup Moscato
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Sweetened whipped cream for garnish (optional)
- In a medium bowl, gently toss sliced berries with sugar and set aside.
- To make the pudding, mix the lemon zest and sugar in a medium bowl. Massage the zest into the sugar with your fingers to release the essential oils. Add the cornstarch and the salt and stir well to combine. Add ¼ cup of cold milk and whisk to remove lumps.
- Put the bottom of a double boiler on the stove and heat several inches of water until it starts to simmer.
- Scald the milk by zapping in the microwave in a large Pyrex measuring cup till just shy of boiling.
- Off the heat and in the top insert of the double boiler, beat the egg yolks.
- Very slowly add a few drops of hot milk, whisking all the while. Continue to add hot milk, no more than a few drops at a time and whisking constantly, until you’ve added about ½ cup.
- Strain the egg and milk mixture back into the vessel holding the rest of the hot milk, and pour the combined egg and milk back into the top of the double boiler.
- Set it over the simmering water in the bottom part of the double boiler, making sure the bottom of the top insert does not touch the water.
- Heat the egg and milk mixture for about a minute, stirring constantly, very gently.
- Add the sugar and cornstarch mixture and continue to stir.
- After a few minutes, the mixture should start to thicken.
- Very, very slowly, add a few drops of the wine, stirring gently but continuously. Add a few more drops and continue to stir. Keep adding a bit of wine at a time, stirring gently between additions, until you've added all of it. Then add the vanilla and stir some more.
- Continue to cook, stirring continuously, for another few minutes, just until the mixture thickens.
- Remove from the heat, add the butter and continue to stir for a few more minutes as the pudding starts to cool.
- Press a piece of plastic wrap on the top of the pudding and let cool to room temperature.
- To make parfaits, layer some of the pudding on the bottom of 4 dessert cups (glass is best to show off the layers). Divide the sliced berries between the parfaits and layer evenly over the pudding. Divide up the remaining pudding and top the berries, smoothing the top.
- Top with a layer of whipped cream and garnish with a strawberry if desired.
Total time does not include cooling time and chilling time. Number of servings depends on the size of your dessert cups.
Pudding recipe adapted from Food 52.