There’s a reason they say: “Life is short. Eat dessert first.” It really is the best part of the meal. Now that spring has arrived, there will be plenty of entertaining opportunities. Why not offer to bring dessert? Many people don’t realize that craft stores have large baking departments with specialty pans, cake decorating tools, glassware, cake plates, fondant and many other useful tricks of the trade to make your desserts the hit of the party.
Apple Pie – Hot apple pie a la mode is a favorite any time of year. Layering the apple slices across the top in a creative spiral design adds to the visual appeal.
Chocolate Birds Nests – Kids and adults love the taste of Rice Krispie Treats but these have a wonderful springtime chocolate twist. Simply follow the recipe using chocolate rice cereal. Drop spoonfuls into cupcake wrappers and shape into nests. For the finishing touch, place a few malted milk eggs or jellybeans on top as eggs.
Brownies with Heart – Everyone has a recipe for brownies. To make them extra special, bake them in a specialty pan with individual compartments. Cut out a paper heart and set in on top, and then sprinkle with powdered sugar. It’s so much more impressive than the usual square cut brownie.
Caramel Flan – This delicious egg custard has a caramel glaze poured over the top.
Raspberry Cheesecake – Any flavor of cheesecake is a delicious choice year round.
Chocolate Fudge Cake – This chocolate lover’s dream has a thick layer of chocolate fudge icing, chocolate filling and a chocolate graham cracker crust. Yummy!
Red Velvet Roll – Moist rich chocolate cake filled with vanilla cream and topped with chocolate shavings, coffee beans and a dusting of chocolate powder – Who could resist?
Chocolate Truffles – To make these decadent truffles, you will need to fill the candy mold one layer at a time. Form the outer shell by coating the mold with chocolate. Next add the filling. Popular favorites are hazelnuts, butter cream, peanut butter, caramels, chocolate liqueurs and cream fillings. A piping bag can be used to make filling easier. Refrigerate the mold to allow the filling and chocolate to solidify. The last step is adding another layer of chocolate to fill any remaining voids and seal the top of the mold. Refrigerate and carefully un-mold. If you want a more colorful treat, dip each truffle in melted chocolate and then dip in candy sprinkles. Your candy making skills will be the envy of all your guests.
Assorted Cookies – Dress up your next batch of cookies by using fanciful cookie cutters, and embellishing with icing, sprinkles, nuts or dipping chocolate.
Cupcakes – These are easy to make party favorites and kids love to help with decorating.
Fruit Tart – This is a beautiful, eye-catching dessert. It’s all about the pattern and colors. The brightly colored plate creates the perfect frame for this artistic piece.
Yogurt Parfaits – What could be easier than mixing yogurt and fresh fruit?
Muffins – Decorative paper wraps add pizzazz to simple muffins and cupcakes. Use a piping bag to apply whipped cream icing and top with a few berries and a sprig of mint.
Raspberry Vanilla Pudding – While this may appear fancy, it’s easy to make. You’ll need an empty egg carton to hold the glass dishes at an angle. Mix the pudding, pour it into the tilted dishes and refrigerate. Puree raspberries and pour onto the firm pudding. A little whipped cream, a few chocolate pieces, a fresh raspberry and a mint leaf complete this visually intriguing dessert.
Cream Puffs – Two dessert favorites in one: cream puffs and strawberry shortcake.
So many delicious choices! What’s your favorite? The only challenge in making dessert is preventing your family from devouring it before the guests arrive. Oh well, you can always make extra just in case.