Roasted Strawberry Rhubarb and Yogurt Parfaits

Strawberry rhubarb parfait recipe - cookieandkate.com

Will my fellow perfectionists please raise their hands? I know I’m not the only one who chases perfection and suffers for it. In its more mild form, perfectionism can be a good thing, a steady drive to improve. I’ve taken it to the extreme lately, though, into never-good-enough territory. At this point, I am my own harshest critic and my own worst enemy. Whenever a surefire recipe concept fails me, or I don’t like what I see in the mirror, or the crumbs and splatters take over my kitchen countertop, my disappointment spirals downward until I hit rock-bottom defeat.

strawberry, rhubarb and honey

Eventually, I drag myself up and put on Cookie’s leash so we can walk it off. Those brisk walks bring perspective. I remind myself that perfection is entirely subjective. Not to mention, impossible. Nothing will ever be perfect. So why am I bothering with such an impossible pursuit? My drive to be the best only succeeds in making me feel worthless, jealous, even bitter. That’s not me! To that end, I’ve hired a professional to help me. I want to learn how to accept less-than-perfect with grace rather than defeat.

strawberry and rhubarb

I wanted to find the perfect vehicle for this sweet and sour strawberry-rhubarb topping, but it’s just plain good on a lot of things. My strawberry and rhubarb were threatening to go bad, so I decided to roast the strawberries and rhubarb in the oven like I did for this balsamic stone fruit sundae. Roasting fruit is so simple and magical. If you’ve ever cooked down rhubarb on the stove and been disappointed by the resulting fibrous goop, I think you’ll prefer it roasted. The heat of the oven concentrates the sweetness of the strawberries and the tartness of the rhubarb. The final product is kind of jammy and still retains some texture, just like the filling in my strawberry rhubarb crisp.

It’s great on pancakes, ice cream or swirled into milkshakes. I’m pretty sure it would be the best cheesecake topping ever. Tart plain yogurt might be my favorite creamy base, though. Add layers of granola, yogurt and strawberry-rhubarb stuff for a “parfait”—which, ironically, means perfect in French. (A coincidence, really. Insert eye roll here.) I just sprinkled granola on top for the pictures, but you can load it up however you’d like. If you’re looking for an exceptionally simple and fresh spring dessert, this is it.

Roasted strawberry and rhubarb - cookieandkate.comstrawberry rhubarb ice creamRoasted strawberry-rhubarb sauce - cookieandkate.comRoasted strawberry rhubarb and yogurt - cookieandkate.com

Roasted Strawberry Rhubarb and Yogurt Parfaits
Author: 
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 to 8
 
Roasted, honey-sweetened strawberries and rhubarb yield a delightfully sweet and tart sauce. You swirl the sauce into yogurt, oatmeal and milkshakes. The warm sauce would be a killer topping for ice cream, cheesecake or toast.
Ingredients
Strawberry-rhubarb sauce
  • 1 pound strawberries, hulled and sliced into bite-sized pieces
  • 1 pound rhubarb (about 4 stalks), cut into ¼-inch wide slices
  • ⅓ cup honey
  • 1 small lemon, juiced
Parfait ingredients
  • 1 batch of homemade honey almond granola, or several cups of store-bought granola (nut free if desired)
  • 32 ounces plain yogurt (Greek yogurt/vanilla yogurt works, too)
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. On the baking sheet, toss the strawberry and rhubarb with the honey and spread the fruit into a single layer. Bake for about 20 to 25 minutes, tossing halfway, until fruit is tender and juicy. Watch the fruit on the edges of the pan, as the honey can burn quickly.
  3. Transfer the fruit and the juices to a bowl. Stir in the lemon juice. Serve warm over ice cream or cheesecake or let it cool and swirl it into a milkshake, etc.
  4. If you want to make parfaits: in small glasses or bowls, layer yogurt, strawberry-rhubarb sauce and granola to your liking.
Notes

P.s. Some relevant reading: The Confidence Gap and I’ll Finish the Dishes When I’m Dead.

Comments

  1. says

    I feel your pain!!! No matter how many recipes turn out right the one that doesn’t is the one you remember that drives you bonkers. As sure no need know about it really…but it just niggles!! You’re not alone!

  2. Sara says

    Where did you find the rhubarb?! I’ve been looking all over for it. And by all over I mean at cosentinos.

    • says

      Haha, hey Sara. I found it at Natural Grocer’s. I’ve also seen rhubarb at Whole Foods. Neither of those are close to you, though, sorry!

  3. says

    Fellow perfectionist here, raising BOTH hands in the air! I totally hear you when you say it can be a good thing, but on the other hand you’re your own worst enemy. Having said that, when it comes to finding the perfect vehicle for this recipe, I’d say licking it off a spoon sounds pretty perfect to me! :)

  4. says

    I am shyly raising my hand because I am one of those perfectionist for sure and it can go to the extreme too! It really bugs me when my recipes turn out upside-down but I am glad you walk it off with Cookie because animals always cheer up!!! Congratulations on the Parfait though because it is leaving all of us drooling on our keyboard (yuck!)

    • says

      Hello, Kira! I do hate it when my recipes don’t turn out right. Cookie always makes me feel better, though. Hope you’re having a great weekend.

  5. says

    Also I can totally relate to the quest for perfection conundrum. I get to that place a lot, especially when photographing food. None of the pictures ever feel good enough. But nothing wipes my stress like a good, quality nap. It’s a great way to slow down and realize that life is not about perfection- but about doing the best you can, doing good for others, and enjoying the ride.

    • says

      Ugh, I know the feeling. Great suggestion on the nap—I’m not much of a napper, but I always do feel reinvigorated afterward. I like your attitude. :)

  6. says

    Because I’m a perfectionist, I haven’t posted a recipe on my blog yet. I’ve prepared several meals with the intent of sharing them; unfortunately, they didn’t turn out exactly the way I wanted them to. :P

    I never considered roasting fruit, even though I love roasting veggies. This looks amazing!

    • says

      Oh, I can so relate. I hate it when recipes don’t turn out just right! Happens to me all the time. Hope you’ll try roasted fruit sometime—they basically turn into pie filling. Yum.

  7. says

    Coincidentally, Kate, I was just remembering a simple dessert I once literally threw together at the last minute which turned out deliciously. It was layered, like this, with different flavours of Greek yoghurt, lemon curd and ginger biscuit crumbs. Love your healthier version! What a great reminder.
    As for the perfectionism, I think a large proportion of us suffer from it. For me, I’m a perfectionist when it comes to work, mostly, but not with things that I don’t enjoy like doing dishes!

    • says

      Helen, that dessert of yours sounds marvelous. I bet the tangy yogurt balanced the sweet cookies nicely. You’re right, I’m not a perfectionist about absolutely everything… like, my car is a pit right now and I don’t really care. I think I set the bar a little too high for myself when I quit my job to blog full time, so I’d be much better off with more realistic expectations.

  8. says

    I feel like I could have written this exact post myself. YES — I am a crazy perfectionist and am still trying to convince myself that perfection is overrated (it’s sort of going well? I dunno). One thing I do know is that this recipe sounds amazing and these photos, !!!. LOVE.

    • says

      Stephanie, it’s nice to hear that you relate. I want to make everything *just right* and I’ll keep trying until I get there. It’s probably a big waste of time and energy, but it is nice to be really proud of the outcome! xo!

  9. says

    I love yogurt parfaits! They’re just so fun and fruity and they remind me of summer (which is always a good thing). These parfaits look so delicious! I love how you incorporated the classic strawberry-rhubarb flavor into these – I can only imagine how amazing they are.
    Pinning!

  10. says

    *Raises hand* This is definitely me! Im constantly striving to improve, which in itself is not a bad thing as you say, but when it comes with the negative implications such as being to harsh on yourself and over-analysing, then I agree – a long reflective walk is definitely in order! Love the look of these parfaits by the way – strawberry and rhubarb go together wonderfully – it looks pretty perfect to me :)

  11. says

    Wow, the color of this is insane! Must try! I wish you well on your journey to allow yourself grace to not be perfect. Letting things go just doesn’t come naturally to us perfectionists! I also hired a professional for help, and along the way found that there were actually more things to like about myself and be proud of than to not like or to hide. I dont know why I was surprised, but I’ll take it :) Overall I’ve felt more peace and more time to “relax”, which has never been a strong word in my vocabulary ;) It’s paying dividends in how I feel and I’m sure, in how my husband and others close to me feel when being around me! Good luck, Kate! You are always good enough!

    • says

      Thank you, Sophie! It’s really nice to hear that you can relate. Good for you, for getting help! I hope I can find more time to relax soon. I’m pretty good at chilling out when I’m with my friends, but left on my own, I just work all the time!

  12. says

    Girl, I have those moments ALL the time. Take this weekend for example…I was on a tight schedule and was supposed to me participating in this french macaron challenge with a ‘super secret recipe’ well…let me tell you, after 3 attempts, I called it a day. That’s right…3! It was so defeating, I used just about every bowl in the house and went through a dozen eggs and was super late. I walked my dog at the end and realized that while super annoying, I had learned something, but still, ugggghhh! So this post totally made my day to see that i’m not alone. And the parfaits…they just look delectable! yum!

    • says

      Phi, I’ve heard macarons are impossible! I’m sorry yours didn’t turn out. I’m also really sorry about all those dishes you had to wash afterward. :( You are definitely not alone. Glad the dog walk brought some perspective! xo

  13. says

    I have a TON of those, but good for you for actually pushing yourself to do something about them! I have had rhubarb roasted and it is seriously the best. Pretty sure I want to smear this parfait over all the things.

  14. says

    Haha… I used to be a perfectionist but I’ve attempted to ‘reform myself’ over the years, particularly since I’ve been married. It feels good to be a little more relaxed about things these days! Being a perfectionist definitely leads to great outcomes though; I reckon higher standards yield continuous improvement and make someone (i.e you!) better at what they do! Hence the amazing standard of this blog and its recipes :) Love this one. I am a big fan of any kind of fruit dessert. Plus, I adore rhubarb and strawberry together, yum! x

  15. says

    Oh my word these photos!!! I am for reals about to dive into my screen. Sorry you’ve had such hard feelings lately. It’s much more intensified when you’re working for yourself, too. So much to do all of the time and no one available there to brainstorm ideas, get opinions, etc. It’s a LOT, so give yourself a pat on the back for all that you’re doing. Glad you reached out for help! Sometimes these things are bigger than us! Let’s catch up soon. :)

  16. Jen B says

    Just made your strawberry rhurbarb crisp today (husband said it was the best ever) and I decided to come back and check out your other recipes. This post gives me the idea to just put the crisp I made tonight on my yogurt in the morning as a breakfast parfait!

    • says

      Jen, hope your breakfast was delightful! I bet it was. I’m so glad you’re enjoying my recipes, thank you for commenting!

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