This is my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE thing in the entire world. I know, that’s quite the statement, but you’ll have to try it, and then you’ll understand why. Fresh berries are one of my favorite things, and growing up in the Pacific Northwest it’s no wonder why. Every summer I stock my freezer with fresh berries (Lay on a cookie sheet in a single layer and place in freezer until hard, then throw into a ziplock or freezer container.) They easily keep good for at least one year, staying as individual berries, never clumping together. If you don’t have access to all the berries I used, you can easily adjust to what you have on hand. I wouldn’t recommend using frozen strawberries though, as they will be too watery.
And DON’T skip toasting the Irish Oatmeal, it adds a very important touch.
1 lb strawberries
1 cup raspberries*
1 cup blackberries*
1 cup marionberries*
2 T sugar
2 cups cream
1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar
2 tsp instant clearjel, optional**
2 T vanilla extract
1 cup sour cream
1 cup McCann’s Quick Cooking Irish Oatmeal (or quick oats)
Spread oats on a dry baking sheet, toast at 350 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, until toasted and fragrant. Set aside to cool.
Chop strawberries, add other berries and sugar. Stir to combine.
Cover and chill in fridge for an hour or 2. (This step can be skipped if necessary).
Mash berries with a potato masher or fork, still leaving some chunks.
Whip cream, and before it gets to soft peaks, sprinkle in instant clearjel and confectioner’s sugar. Continue whipping to soft peaks. Stir in sour cream, vanilla, and 2/3 cup of the oats.
Layer in parfait glasses, putting a spoon or two of the cream mixture, berry mixture, and continue layering, (this size of glasses you use will determine how many layers).
End with a dollop of the cream mixture. Sprinkle tops with the 1/3 cup remaining toasted oats.
You can also top with a fresh berry.
*I used frozen marion, black, and raspberries, but fresh strawberries. It works quite well in this dish, and you can also use a different combination of berries, or use just strawberries alone.
**You don’t have to use the instant clearjel, but it stabilizes the whipped cream, so you can make it ahead of time and not worry about it losing its body or getting runny.