Traditionally, in our family, Thanksgiving dinner always includes pumpkin pie (see Grandma’s recipe). However, this year I decided to change it up a bit by serving pumpkin mousse parfait, that still have the familiar pumpkin pie flavors. They require some assembly but it can be done a day before needed — a huge advantage in reducing stress on dinner day!
These pumpkin mousse parfaits look and taste delicious, and are a light, decadent conclusion to a festive meal.
One recipe makes enough for a big dinner party but it can be halved if you are serving fewer people.
Pumpkin Mousse Parfait
- 1 envelope (1/4-oz) unflavored gelatin
- 1/4 cup dark rum
- 1 15-ounce can pumpkin
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup lightly packed light brown sugar
- 2 extra-large egg yolks
- 2 teaspoons finely grated orange peel
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 1/2 cup cold heavy (or whipping) cream
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Sweetened Whipped Cream
- 1 cup cold heavy (or whipping) cream
- 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3 1/2 cups chopped ginger snap cookies
- 3 Tablespoons very thinly sliced dry crystallized ginger
Pots and Utensils
- Small heatproof metal bowl
- 2 large mixing bowls
- Mixer with whisk attachment
- 2 quart saucepan
- Rolling pin
- 12 Parfait glasses
- Parchment or wax paper
- Plastic wrap
Prepare Pumpkin Mousse
Pour the rum into the small metal bowl.
Sprinkle gelatin on top of the rum.
Let stand 10 min. to soften the gelatin.
In a large bowl, mix the pumpkin, granulated sugar, brown sugar, egg yolks, orange peel, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt until well combined.
Add enough water to the 2 quart saucepan to come 1 inch up the side.
Heat to boiling, then reduce the heat to simmer.
Set the bowl of gelatin mixture over the simmering water.
Heat until gelatin dissolves.
Immediately whisk the hot gelatin mixture into pumpkin mixture.
In a large clean bowl, beat 1 1/2 cups cream at high speed.*
Add vanilla and continue to beat until soft peaks form.
Gently fold cream into pumpkin mixture.
Prepare Sweetened Cream
Beat 1 cup whipping cream on high speed until it begins to thicken.*
Add 1 Tablespoon sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla.
Continue to beat until medium peaks form. Do not over beat.
Make The "Crust"
Roll the snaps between sheets of wax paper with a rolling pin.
Assemble The Parfaits
Divide the pumpkin mixture in half. Spoon one half of the mixture into 12 small parfait glasses.
Add the crushed cookies to each of the glasses.
Divide the whipping cream in half. Top each glass with one half of the cream.
Add the remaining pumpkin mixture to the glasses.
Dollop remaining whipped cream on top.
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight,
Garnish parfaits with crystallized ginger slices.
*Be sure that the bowl and whisk are clean before you start beating to make certain the cream will thicken.