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2 servings of strawberry Eton Mess with homemade strawberry sauce in two clear glasses

Strawberry Eton Mess with Homemade Strawberry Sauce

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Strawberry Eton Mess is a sweet parfait featuring layers of freshly whipped cream, crushed meringue cookies,  fresh strawberries, and homemade strawberry sauce. This easy strawberry parfait recipe makes the perfect dessert.

Parfait glass with Strawberry Eton Mess Fruit Parfait topped with a meringue cookie and sliced strawberries

Strawberry Eton Mess

Sometimes simple, quality ingredients make the best desserts. Sliced and artfully arranged, sweet, peak of the season Florida Strawberries, whipped cream, meringue cookies and strawberry sauce were transformed into a sublime dessert.

Showcased in decorative glasses, the vibrant layers made for a breathtakingly beautiful dessert. The hubby raved with each and every bite. Seriously, I think it trumped chocolate cake and chocolate chip cookies, his two favorite desserts! This Eton Mess is the perfect way to celebrate Florida strawberry season!

2 small Weck jars filled with homemade strawberry sauce, surrounded by fresh strawberries

Homemade Strawberry Sauce

I took my first foray into real canning with this Homemade Strawberry Sauce. Canning is the perfect way to preserve these juicy, fragrant Florida berries while they’re at their peak. Who knew canning was so easy?

I sterilized my jars by running them through the dishwasher on the sanitize setting. Boiling them would also work. Then after pouring the sauce into the canning jars, wiping the tops clean and securing the lids, it was just a matter of processing them in boiling water.

Easy, peasy. I was delighted to find tight seals a day later when I went to make this outstanding recipe for Strawberry Eton mess. Whew.

Fruit parfait with layers of whipped cream, crushed meringue cookies and sliced strawberries in parfait glasses with fresh strawberries nearby
Strawberry Eton Mess 

We’re lucky enough to find luscious Florida strawberries in Indiana this time of year. They actually taste like strawberries, unlike some winter berries; so sweet and juicy! They’re perfect to use in the Strawberry Eton Mess fruit parfaits.

What is an Eton Mess?

Eton mess is a British dessert made of strawberries, broken meringues and whipped cream. First mentioned in 1893, it was served to Eton College students at an annual cricket match. The “mess” may have come from the not so polished look of the finished dessert. Interesting to note, there is also a Lancing Mess made with bananas.

Tips for Making an Eton Mess:

The ingredients are simple, and if you care to make a more traditional version, you may skip the homemade strawberry sauce. Just purchase meringues (or make my Simple Meringue Cookies), buy ripe fragrant strawberries, and whip up some heavy cream with a touch of sugar and vanilla.

  • This success of this berry dessert depends on the quality of strawberries. Florida strawberries are terrific from November to April if you have access, then local strawberries are available to us in early June. Then it’s typically California berries the rest of the year.
  • Buy only strawberries that are red and fragrant. When you get close to the display in the produce section, you should smell the aroma of strawberries!
  • Whipping your own cream is best. Using a cold bowl and powdered sugar both help stabilize the cream.
  • Pure vanilla extract is perfect for flavoring. Check the label and make sure you purchase pure vanilla, not imitation.
  • Layer carefully so that the cream and berries don’t leave smears on the glasses you use as serving dishes.
  • You’ll want to make these on the day you serve them for the best results. The sliced strawberries will deteriorate over time and the meringues will soften. 
  • You can have all the ingredients ready to go (the French call this mise en place). The cream can be whipped, the berries hulled and sliced, and the meringues crushed. If serving for company, you can layer in pretty glass dishes an hour or two before they arrive.

More Strawberry Recipes:

 

Strawberry Eton Mess with Homemade Strawberry Sauce

Strawberry Eton Mess with Homemade Strawberry Sauce

A layered berry, whipped cream and meringue parfait dessert named for the British college from which it's thought to originate.

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Yield 4 servings (varies depending on size of serving container)

Ingredients

Strawberry Sauce:

  • 2 pounds ripe strawberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • 2 teaspoons of cornstarch (mixed in 1 tablespoon water)

For assembly:

  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 pound ripe strawberries, sliced
  • Store bought or homemade meringues

Instructions

  1. To make strawberry sauce, hull and cut strawberries into chunks. Place in medium sauce pan. Add sugar and lemon juice and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, stirring frequently, until strawberries are very soft. Mash with a potato masher or spoon.
  2. Pour contents of pan into a fine mesh sieve placed over a bowl or large spouted measuring cup. Press liquid through the sieve.
  3. Skim any obvious foam off the top of the liquid and pour back into the saucepan. Whisk in the cornstarch and water slurry and bring to a boil. Cook for 2-3 minutes until mixture begins to thicken. Again, skim off any foam.
  4. To can the sauce for use later, pour sauce into sterilized canning containers. Wipe the rims clean and seal with the cap. Process in a water bath for 5 minutes (jars should be submerged in the boiling water). Turn off heat and let rest for 10 minutes. Remove from water bath and let rest the counter top for 24 hours. If the jars did not seal, use sauce within 3 weeks.
  5. To make the Eton mess, whip the heavy cream with the powdered sugar and vanilla until stiff peaks form. Set aside.
  6. Crumble meringue cookies. Set aside.
  7. Hull and slice berries.
  8. Using 4-6 decorative glasses, start layering the desserts. Begin with a few spoonfuls of whipped cream followed by berries, strawberry sauce and more whipped cream. Repeat as room allows finishing off with whipped cream and a strawberry or sliced strawberry to garnish.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 700 Total Fat: 33g Saturated Fat: 21g Trans Fat: 1g Unsaturated Fat: 10g Cholesterol: 101mg Sodium: 68mg Carbohydrates: 102g Net Carbohydrates: 0g Fiber: 7g Sugar: 89g Sugar Alcohols: 0g Protein: 5g

 

Strawberry Eton Mess photo and text collage for Pinterest

 

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