Save room for the dessert


Sheryl Sollars - Welcome to My Kitchen



As you all know from my previous columns, I love food. But at the top of my list are desserts.

In fact, all my friends and family ask me to always bring the dessert to food functions. The problem is that I have so many favorites that it is always hard to decide what to make.

I am not sure why I am so addicted to sweets, but I think it might have been that we did not have a lot of them at home growing up. So when I was a mom with three kids, I made sure we had dessert 2-3 times a week.

In my opinion the meal is not complete without them. I like all types, although cake is probably my least favorite.

I am a stickler for “homemade.” The only part of my desserts that I don’t make from scratch would be my pie crust. Until a few years ago that would not be true, but today, Pillsbury makes a wonderful crust which is sold in the dairy case. They are rolled and ready to place in your pie plate and are very flaky and taste better than most homemade.

I am very critical about pie crust, so you know it must be good.

The other one is Elsie Grace’s “No Roll Pie Crust.” It comes in a bag which you mix with oil and milk.

Stir and pour into a pie plate. Press into a formed crust and bake. It is absolutely wonderful. It is somewhat sweet and very “short” (meaning crumbly and flaky) like a shortbread cookie. Just fill it with fresh fruit or your favorite pudding and top with whipped cream.

Your dinner guests will love you for it and you will feel like a gourmet cook.

I also love any dessert which has a creamy layer somewhere in it such as cakes with whipped cream between the layers or a torte with cream topping.

Desserts usually are very easy to make and I think sometimes women just think it’s too much “fuss.” Some of them are, but most have very few steps and are worth the extra work.

Today I am giving you two great dessert recipes that I hope you all will enjoy. They are simple and easy for you to make so go ahead and take the extra time.

Your family and friends will thank you.

PEANUT BUTTER TORTE

This is very rich but very delicious. If you have a torte pan it works wonderful for this but otherwise use a 9×13 glass baking dish.

1 Fudge Brownie Mix (any brand that calls for a 9×13 pan)

12 oz. cream cheese (softened at room temperature)

1 cup peanut butter

16 oz cool whip

4-5 Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups

Bake brownie mix according to directions, making sure you DO NOT overbake. Cool completely. Mix softened cream cheese with peanut butter until well mixed and creamy. Fold in 8 oz. Cool Whip. Carefully spread over brownie mix and then top with remaining 8 oz Cool Whip. Chop Reese’s cups into small pieces and place over top of dessert. Chill for at least 4 hours. (Keep dessert refrigerated)

FOOD FOR THE ANGELS

This is a recipe that I have made many times over the past 45 years. Each time I make it, people always ask, “What’s in this?” For best results make a day ahead and chill torte overnight.

5 egg whites

1 ¼ cup sugar

35 Ritz crackers, crushed into small pieces

2 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup finely chopped pecans

1 ½ cup Whipped Cream

2 tablespoon confectioner’s sugar

Grated coconut

Beat egg whites until frothy. Gradually add sugar and continue to beat until whites are very stiff. Fold in vanilla, crackers and pecans. Spread in greased 9×13” pan. Bake at 350 for 23-28 minutes or until meringue is brown and still soft to the touch. Cool completely. Whip cream until stiff then fold in 2 T. confectioner’s sugar. Spread over baked meringue and sprinkle with grated coconut. Chill OVERNIGHT. Cut into squares.

Have a great week — Sheryl.

Sheryl Sollars, a Clinton County native, is an accomplished cook and homemaker. She contributes her column “Welcome to My Kitchen” out of her love of homemaking and of sharing her thoughts with her readers. If you have cooking questions or a recipe you want to share, please contact Sheryl at kitchenlady44@yahoo.com.

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Sheryl Sollars

Welcome to My Kitchen