Make it Yourself... Chiffon and Parfait Pies

Two different types of Parfait and Chiffon Pies. One with ice cream and one with egg whites. Both are excellent and a change from fruit and custard pies. They were popular when Sue and I were young housewives. I made them often for entertaining.
Pineapple Parfait Pie
 Parfait Pies -The Better Homes and Gardens Golden Treasury cookbook has this to say about Parfait pies. "A trendsetter of the 50’s they originated in the US as a promotion by a flour miller and a manufacturer of fruit flavored gelatins". Single crust concoctions with fruit, gelatin, and ice cream filling, these pies were very popular because they were so easy to make and there were so many combinations of fruit, ice cream and gelatins to try”.
The term Parfait means perfect. So fitting for this type of pie.
  Use a good ice cream when making this. It is the main ingredient so you want it to be a good quality. The cheaper ice creams have a lot of air whipped into them, and will not work as well. How about trying raspberries, vanilla ice cream and raspberry jello or Orange jello, orange juice for the liquid, vanilla ice cream and adding some flaked coconut. Use your own favorite flavors just use the same quantities.
 Pineapple Parfait Pie
1 8 -¼ can crushed pineapple
1 3 ounce package lemon flavored gelatin
1 pint vanilla ice cream
1 baked 8 inch pie shell
Whipped cream
  Drain pineapple; reserve syrup. Add water to syrup to make 1 ¼ cups. Combine gelatin and syrup; bring to boiling. Stir till gelatin is dissolved. Remove from heat. Add ice cream by spoonfuls to hot liquid; stir till melted. Chill till partially set; fold in pineapple. Pile filling into pastry shell. Chill till firm. Garnish with whipped cream and cherry if desired.

 Chiffon Type Pies were quite popular in the 40’s. This recipe from the Better Homes and Gardens Golden Treasury of Cooking is that type of pie. I made these often when I was first married and we entertained a lot. Now days, I still make them, but just not as often.
  They call for egg whites beaten stiff and folded in.
Citrus Pie
½ cup sugar
Citrus Pie
1 teaspoon (1 envelope) unflavored gelatin
Dash salt
4 egg yolks
½ teaspoon grated lemon peel, set aside
⅓ cup lemon juice (I used Meyer Lemons)
½ teaspoon grated orange peel, set aside
3 Tablespoons orange juice
2 Tablespoons water
4 egg whites
¼ cup sugar
1 baked and cooled 8 to 9 inch pie crust
In saucepan combine the ½ cup sugar, gelatin, and salt. Beat egg yolks, lemon and orange juice and water together. Stir into gelatin mixture. Cook and stir over medium heat just until mixture comes to a boil. Remove from heat and add saved grated peel.
Cool, stirring occasionally until partially set. 
 Beat egg whites until soft peaks form, slowly add the ¼ cup sugar and continue beating until stiff peaks form. Fold in gelatin mixture. It helps to lighten the egg whites with a small amount of the gelatin mixture before folding all of it in.
  Put into pie shell and chill till firm. Trim with shredded orange peel if desired.


  1. My mother was a wonderful pie-maker, and she often made chiffon pies when we were growing up!

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    1. You don't see them much anymore though we always enjoyed them. A nice change from a heavier type of pie filling.
      Do you still have your Mom's recipes?

  3. I remember these!

    Now, does anyone other than myself remember this type of cake? I had at a picnic when I was a child. It was a strawberry flavoured cake. The lady that baked it told my Mum that the strawberry flavour came from a box of jello, which flummoxed my Scottish Mum.

    Any ideas??

  4. I remember hearing about this type of cake but have never made one. I wonder if any of our readers have.

  5. Here is the one my mother used to make during the 1960's. It calls for a lot of oil so I don't make it much these days:
    Strawberry Cake

    1 box white cake mix
    1 small box strawberry Jell-O (dry)
    Scant cup cooking oil
    4 egg whites
    1/2 cup water

    Mix thoroughly with electric mixer or by hand. Then add 1 box (about a cup) of thawed, frozen strawberries, mixing by hand to combine. Pour into oiled, floured 9 x 13 baking pan and bake at 325 degrees F. until a knife inserted into center comes out clean.

    1/2 cup (1 stick) softened butter, combined with 1/2 cup thawed strawberries and 2 cups powdered sugar, mixing well. Spread on cooled cake. (You can use half cream cheese, half butter instead of all butter, if you want).

    This is a fancier version, I think it's too sweet so I only use half the sugar:
    Strawberry-and-Cream Cake

    3/4 C. sliced strawberries
    2 C. sugar
    6 Tbsp. butter, softened
    1 (3-oz.) package strawberry Jell-O
    3 large eggs
    2-1/4 C. flour
    2-1/2 tsp. baking powder
    1-1/4 C. milk
    1 tsp. vanilla extract

    1-1/2 C. frozen whipped topping, thawed
    2 Tbsp. sugar
    1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

    1 (8-oz.) block cream cheese
    1/4 C. butter, softened
    1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
    1 C. powdered sugar

    Remaining ingredients:
    3/4 C. sliced strawberries
    1-1/2 C. quartered strawberries

    Preheat oven to 350º. Coat 2 (9-inch) round cake pans with cooking spray; line bottoms of pans with wax paper. Coat wax paper with cooking spray. Place 3/4 C. sliced strawberries in a blender; process until smooth. Place 2 C. sugar, butter, and gelatin in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until blended (about 5 minutes). Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cup, level with a knife. Combine flour and baking powder, whisking well. Add flour mixture to sugar mixture alternately with milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Stir in pureed strawberries and 1 tsp. vanilla. Pour batter into the pans; sharply tap pans once on counter to remove any air bubbles. Bake at 350º for 45 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans 10 minutes on a wire rack, and remove from pans. Peel off wax paper, and cool completely. To prepare filling, combine whipped topping, 2 Tbsp. sugar, and 1/2 tsp. vanilla in a small bowl. To prepare the frosting, beat cream cheese, 1/4 C. butter, and 1/4 tsp. vanilla in a medium bowl with a mixer at low speed just until well-blended (do not overbeat). Gradually add powdered sugar, and beat just until well blended (do not overbeat). Place 1 cake layer on a plate; spread with ¾ C. filling. Arrange 3/4 C. sliced strawberries over the filling; top with remaining cake layer. Spread the remaining filling over top of cake. Spread the frosting over sides of cake. Arrange quartered strawberries on top of cake. Store cake loosely covered in refrigerator.

  6. I have made the Peach Parfait version from the Better Homes & Gardens Golden Treasury of Cooking book countless times. Sometimes I even make it without the crust as just a gelatin dessert. But I have always found that cheaper ice cream works better than the more expensive stuff. The few times I tried with Blue Bell or other premium ice creams, it never came out right, but when I use store brand basic vanilla it comes out every time, no fail.

  7. Hi Lynn, That is interesting as I have never had any luck with the cheaper ice cream. Maybe your store brand is better than what I can buy.
    I don't think I have ever tried the peach, though I do use that cookbook a lot. Thanks for the comment.


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