This luxurious treat is surprisingly healthier than the usual decadent dessert but without the feeling of missing out.


Greek yoghurt is used in the creamy layer instead of cream and a little honey sweetens the fruit rather than sugar. You might be pleasantly surprised by the ‘toffee sauce’ which is made using just one ingredient! If using Medjool dates instead of regular, then there is no need to soak them in water first. This is ideal as a dinner party dessert or cheeky after dinner treat while relaxing on the couch.
Serves 4

  • 200g pitted dates
  • 300g frozen mixed berries
  • 2 tbsp crème de cassis or cranberry or orange juice
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1 vanilla pod
  • 250g Greek yoghurt
  • 125g mascarpone cheese
  • 25g mixed nuts and / or seeds (eg hazelnuts, pecans, almonds, pumpkin, sunflower and linseeds)
  • fresh mint sprigs, to serve, optional


  1. Place the dates in a small bowl and pour over enough boiling water to cover. Set aside to soak and soften for about 10 minutes.
  2. Place the berries in a small pan with the crème de cassis or juice and honey. Split the vanilla pod in half down the length and add half to the fruit. Place over a medium heat and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 3-4 minutes, stirring occassionally, until the fruit has softened and the juice becomes syrupy. Remove and leave to cool completely.
  3. Mix the Greek yoghurt, mascarpone and seeds from the remaining vanilla pod half in a small bowl until well blended. Cover and reserve in the fridge until ready to use.
  4. Blitz the mixed nuts and  / or seeds in a mini blender until finely chopped. Tip into a small bowl and set aside.
  5. Drain the now soaked dates, reserving the liquid. Wipe out the mini blender bowl, add the dates along with 125ml of the reserved liquid. Blitz to give a smooth ‘toffee sauce’.
  6. To assemble, spoon half of the fruit compote between each of four dessert glasses. Spoon two thirds of the creamy mixture between them, spreading it into a layer.
  7. Divide the toffee sauce between the glasses, again spreading into a layer. Top with the remaining fruit compote, followed by dollops of the remaining cream mixture.
  8. Sprinkle the nut and / or seed crumble on top. Garnish with mint if liked and serve.

Sharon hearne smiths layered dessert