Parfait with Brinda


(Brinda Ambal)

“You know what else everybody likes? Parfaits. Have you ever met a person, you say, ‘Let’s get some parfait,’ they say, ‘No, I don’t like no parfait’?” —Donkey, from Shrek

In this addition to Breakfast with Brinda, we will Americanize and health-ify a traditional French dessert: the parfait. The French make their parfait with fruit and ice cream, but of course we don’t do traditional; on par with the country of fast food and drive-in movie theaters, this is about sustenance made so easy you can throw it together during class. 

Let’s review the basic tenets of Breakfast with Brinda. We do breakfast reimagined: you can make it really fast, it’s really good for you, you can use whatever you have in your fridge and it’s low-maintenance enough that you can still pay attention to class. So today, we are making yogurt and fruit parfaits with a heartier topping, because I don’t know about you but my breakfast hunger will not be satisfied by mere bacteria milk and berries.

I liked this contrast in color, and my Zoom breakout room did too. (Brinda Ambal)

First up choose a bowl or glass or jelly jar. You can use glass if you want the beautiful layers to be the star of your SnapChat streaks later on, it just has to be microwavable. Next, put some frozen berries into the jar and microwave them for about 45 seconds. This ensures the ultimate level of juiciness. Be aware that frozen berries, especially the ones you buy from the store, might be more bitter. To negate this, you can add honey or sugar, use other juicy frozen fruits like mangoes or peaches or freeze your own berries when they’re in season to use throughout the year.

On top of this, place some yogurt. My mom is wonderful and makes homemade yogurt. I also just realized she’s been mentioned in three of my three installments thus far, and she well-deserves it. Hi, mom. Anyways, you can use homemade yogurt or store bought plain Greek yogurt or flavored yogurt or cottage cheese or whatever else you have in your fridge.

Now for the topping. I added chia seeds, walnuts and a vague handful of oats to my blender— love those Omega-3’s— and reduced them to powder. I added some cinnamon; you can also add some sugar here if you’re not a huge fan of nutty, earthy flavors. Adding some nuts and oats is really important though because along with the Omega-3’s, they have fiber, carbs and protein, which help me feel full for longer.* Then I added some almonds and pulsed a few times so the topping would retain some crunch. I usually make large quantities of this topping and add it to anything and everything, like smoothies and ice cream and even salads.

Finally, add this topping to the top of the parfait— huh, maybe that’s why it’s called a “topping”— and dig in. Pretend you’re an archaeologist sifting through the layers in search of a rare find, delving into the depths of history. Just don’t zone out for too long, your lab partner probably needs some help.

Mmmm look at those layers. Bon apple tea, please eat breakfast. ((Brinda Ambal))

The nitty-gritty of Parfait with Brinda:

  • Microwave frozen fruit
  • Add yogurt or yogurt alternate
  • Top with topping

*Once again, I am not a professional. This is just my personal experience and opinion. There is more to the nutritional field than a high schooler writing breakfast columns to avoid the impending pile of schoolwork that awaits her.