This dessert is my favorite to serve whenever I have guests over for dinner. I think it’s the “WOW” factor of Eton Mess By Way Of Italy.
My mom was born in London, England, then on my dad’s side of the family was from Sicily. This combination, from my background, definitely allows for awesome fusions dishes and desserts.
Eton Mess is a traditional English dessert consisting of a mixture of strawberries, broken meringue, and double cream. As a young girl, who lived in London in the early ’70s, with my sister and mother, I was exposed to a whole new style of food. Eton Mess was a dessert we’d have after Sunday supper. I remember my mom always let me help, telling me that I could be as creative as I wanted to be when assembling this dessert.
I thought I would update this recipe by taking a slight detour through Italy. Bringing my Italian influences onto the scene.
I’m using a mix of fresh berries, Mascarpone (Italian cream cheese) mixed with lemon zest, and broken turtle pecan Biscotti cookies. Topped off with a sprig of fresh mint and a dusting of powdered sugar.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
Equipment: 1 rimmed baking sheet pan, chef’s knife, 6 parfait glasses, 1 large mixing bowl, meat mallet
1 box of turtle pecan Biscotti cookies
2 (8-ounce) containers of Mascarpone, room temperature
1 lemon, zested
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
1/2 pint blackberries
1/2 pint blueberries
1/2 pint raspberries
10 large strawberries, hulled and quartered
6 small sprigs of fresh mint for garnish
powdered sugar, for dusting the tops
Start by setting up 6 parfait glasses on a rimmed baking sheet pan. Using a small mallet, break up the Biscotti in their package. In a large bowl, add all the berries (reserving a variety of fresh berries for the top).
To the berries, add the granulated sugar, stir to coat all the berries. Let the berries macerate in the sugar for a few minutes. While the berries are macerating, in another bowl, add the Mascarpone, powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and lemon zest, mix until smooth.
Now it’s just a matter of assembling this dessert. Start with a spoonful of the crumbled Biscotti, next, a spoonful of the Mascarpone mixture. Then a spoonful of the berries. Repeat this process ending with a few of the reserved fresh berries and the crumbled Biscotti on the top. Chill for at least 15 minutes before serving. Garnish each Eton Mess with a sprig of fresh mint and a dusting of powdered sugar.
There you have it, my Eton Mess By Way Of Italy.