I never would have thought to take food advice from a cartoon character, but Donkey in Shrek made a valid point:
Donkey: You know what ELSE everybody likes? Parfaits! Have you ever met a person, you say, “Let’s get some parfait,” they say, “Hell no, I don’t like no parfait”? Parfaits are delicious!
Shrek: NO! You dense, irritating, miniature beast of burden! Ogres are like onions! End of story! Bye-bye! See ya later.
Donkey: Parfait’s gotta be the most delicious thing on the whole damn planet!
And who can argue with that? In celebration of Netflix’s new slew of musical-themed titles like Shrek the Musical, I created a green parfait that Shrek and Donkey can both dig their spoons into.
Parfaits can be a great wholesome breakfast or a light dessert. Here’s the key to get kids to dig all the way through the granola, yogurt, and fruit—there’s a layer of Jell-O cubes at the bottom. I discovered the idea of adding Jell-O into layered desserts when working on developing recipes for Knickerbocker Glories—yes, like those in Harry Potter. They have layers of fruit, ice cream, nuts, cake, Jell-O and more, with the Jell-O adding a jiggly, fun dimension to the treat.
As another nod to Shrek, this parfait harnesses green elements like the Lime Jell-O, kiwi slices and green grapes. Placing the grapes into the freezer the night before gives an added cold, crunchy element. If you haven’t discovered the allure of frozen grapes, you’re in for a treat. I try to always keep some on hand in the freezer–they’re perfect to pop into your mouth, especially during the summer months. Here’s another tip—I used to consider it such a war trying to get the kiwi fruit out of its skin until I learned this trick: cut a ripe kiwi in half and then work a small spoon around the edge of the fruit’s flesh, rotating throughout the kiwi until the kiwi half is loosened from the skin.
Shrek’s Kiwi-Yogurt Parfait
For an adult version of the parfait, skip the Jell-O; stir in 2 teaspoons lime zest into the Greek yogurt along with the honey and add a layer of shredded coconut into the parfait for a tropical flair.
Yield: 2 to 4 parfaits, depending on glass size.
1 (3-ounce) package Lime Jell-O (optional)
2 cups green grapes
1 (17.6-ounce) container plain 0% or 2% Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon honey
4 to 6 ripe kiwis
1 to 2 cups granola or cereal
If using Jell-O, the night before making the parfait, prepare Jell-O according to package directions. And while you’re at it, add washed grapes into a large Ziplock bag and place in the freezer.
To prepare, if using the Jell-O, cut into cubes. Open the yogurt container and swirl honey into it, stirring to combine. Slice the grapes in half and chop or slice each kiwi.
The exact amount of fruit and yogurt used in the parfait will depend a lot of the size of your glass—I like to use a parfait glass like the one pictured, a wine glass or even a small mason jar. Start layering the parfait by adding a couple spoonfuls of yogurt into the bottom. Then, layer with optional Jell-O, grapes, kiwi slices, more spoonfuls of yogurt and then lastly topping with granola.