A friend of mine recently went to Italy and took a cooking class. She told me about a dessert they made in the class called “Crema Baverese”. That sounded a lot like a dessert I keep coming across in cookbooks from the 1940;s and ’50’s- “Bavarian Creme”. Indeed, it is the same dessert, which apparently remains popular in Italy, but has been all but lost here.
Bavarian Creme is a delicious mousse-like dessert made from plain gelatin flavored with fresh fruit, juice, or other flavors such as chocolate or coffee and refrigerated in a large mold or individual molds. My aunt tells me that she remembers it being popular in the 1960’s with flavored Jello brand gelatin and whipped cream.
Maybe gelatin desserts went out of style due to overuse in previous years, but I say it’s time to bring back the airy, tasty Bavarian Creme! The strawberry version I made is a great summer time dessert.
Time and Effort– The only difficulty was knowing when the gelatin was partly set. It took 30-40 minutes of being in the fridge to start to set. Other than that, this dessert is quick and easy to make. It does need time to refrigerate before serving.
History: Bavarian Cream is a classic European dessert that was once popular in the United States.
Worth Adding to your Recipe Repertoire: Yes, especially for summer.
Strawberry Bavarian Cream from Better Homes and Gardens 1947 edition:
1 Tablespoon (1 envelope) unflavored gelatin 3/4 Cup confectioners’ sugar
1/4 Cup cold water 1 Tbls. lemon juice
1/2 Cup hot water 1 Cup heavy cream, whipped
1 Cup crushed strawberries whole strawberries
Soften gelatine in cold water; dissolve in hot water. Chill until partially set. Beat until frothy. Add sweetened crushed strawberries and lemon juice; mix well. Fold in whipped cream. Chill in large or individual molds oiled with salad oil, until set. Unmold and garnish with whole berries. Serves 6.