Monday, August 4, 2008

Quick and Easy Desserts

I've come across a few recipes that make dessert easy and fast.
PIE: For the first one I just googled "fool-proof pie crust" and this is what I use now. I was never able to get the traditional recipe of flour, shortening, and a few tablespoons of water to come together into a perfect, crumble-free pie crust like my mom can, but this one works for me. Plus, the recipe makes enough for 4 crusts and the remaining dough can just be divided and wrapped in plastic wrap and/or foil before going in a ziploc bag in the freezer for months. It's so easy to thaw and roll out between sheets of plastic wrap sheets and there are no dishes.
CAKE: Personally, I love this Home and Garden's Cookbook recipe for visiting teachee treats. It literally takes two minutes and you don't have to remember to bring butter to room temperature. It is a small recipe so you won't have cake around the house for a week getting stale and the batter works well for cupcakes (others, I have found, fall in the middle- cupcakes with craters are not quite so beautiful). I couldn't find an equivalent online, so I will write it out:
One-Bowl Chocolate Cake (recipe for Eli's birthday cupcakes, video to the left)
1 C. flour
1 C. sugar
1/2 C. cocoa powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
3/4 C. milk
1/3 C. cooking oil
1 tsp. vanilla
1 egg
1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour an 8 or 9 inch square or round pan or line cupcake pan (will make about 10).
2) To dry ingredients add milk, oil, and vanilla, mix for about 2 minutes until well combined, then add egg and beat.
3) Spread in prepared pan, bake 20-35 minutes, depending on pan.
-For an extra treat in cupcakes, pipe some instant pudding into their centers.
-No-Cook Fudge Frosting: add boiling water a tablespoon at a time to 2 C. powdered sugar, 1/4 C. cocoa powder, 1/4 C. butter (softened), and 1/2 tsp. vanilla until it reaches spreading consistency. If you add too much, just refrigerate and it will firm up.
CARAMEL: I learned about this from my friend Shannon. To make caramel, simply simmer an unopened (unbelievable to me too) can of Sweetened Condensed Milk in some water on the stove for two hours. That's it! She used it to sandwich two cookies together and so far I've dipped apples in it and added it to the bottom of a chocolate cream pie. You could drizzle it on ice cream or put between layers of cake.


Leilani said...

Hah, you found me! I was gonna email my blog when I actually had enough posts to be interesting but you beat me to the punch. I would LOVE to see you! And hopefully Anna too. I feel bad for not being able to see you guys in May but we're gonna be in Utah for like 2 weeks so let's meet up! I'll call you when we get there. Oh, and do you use a food processor to mix that dough?

Brian, Helena & Eli said...

pie crust? I do it by hand, it has enough liquid to come together easily. Must save on dishes.