Winter Citrus Fruit Parfait with Whipped Cream

Winter Citrus Fruit Parfait with Whipped Cream recipe by The Culinary Institute of America

Winter Citrus Fruit Parfait
with Whipped Cream
by The Culinary Institute of America

Dessert Just Gets Better

The chefs at the CIA can keep you eating better in the New Year with something they like to call the “dessert flip.” This parfait is a delicious example. By focusing on fresh seasonal fruits and using only a small amount of the topping, you get all the flavor and crunch—and still feel good about keeping your healthier eating resolution. With a little thought, you can “flip” many of your own favorite dessert recipes to make them healthier. Use seasonal fruit when you can and only small amounts of other sweets.

This is a plan-ahead dessert: allow two days to prepare. Learn how to suprême citrus fruit with our video demonstration by CIA Chef Bill Briwa.

Chef notes on making the Citrus Fruit Parfait:

  • Mint is delicate, so the less of its surface that touches the knife, the better. Roll the leaves lengthwise and slice through them to shred the leaves into bite-sized pieces.
  • Almonds are a superfood, which means they have no nutritional downside and contain plenty of good-for-you nutrients like vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, and potassium.


Makes 6 Servings

  • 2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup packed chopped fresh mint leaves (optional)
  • 1 pink grapefruit
  • 2 oranges
  • 2 blood oranges, if available; otherwise, use 2 more oranges
  • 1/4 ounce (1 envelope) powdered gelatin
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds to be toasted for garnish
  • 1 cup heavy cream

Parfait Directions:

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine 1 cup water, lemon juice, sugar, vanilla, and mint leaves (if using), and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and let steep for 30 minutes.
  2. While the mint mixture is steeping, suprême your citrus fruits: peel the fruit and cut individual segments from the citrus by slicing along both sides of the membrane that separates the segments. Cut the grapefruit suprêmes in half. Evenly divide the citrus segments across six glasses of your choice.
  3. Place the remaining one cup of water into a small bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over the water. Allow to sit for 15 minutes.
  4. Strain the mint mixture into a 4-cup container with a spout for pouring. Using a double boiler, melt the bloomed gelatin over a pot of hot water. Add the melted gelatin to the strained mint liquid.
  5. Top the citrus segments with the gelatin liquid, filling each one about 1/3 of the way up the glass. Chill overnight to set.

Whipped Cream and Serving Notes:

  • For best results, be sure the cream is very cold. Start whipping at medium speed and keep whipping until the cream just starts to thicken. At this point, increase the speed to high and keep whipping until it increases in volume by half, to soft peak, about 2 minutes.
  • Using a spoon, drop the whipped cream on the top of each parfait. Top with toasted almonds and serve.

Toasted Almonds:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Arrange the sliced almonds in a single layer on a parchment-paper-lined sheet pan. Place in the oven and bake until the nuts are toasted, approximately 10 minutes. Makes 1/2 cup.