Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Just a Trifle

There are things I can do, that I spend a lot of time doing, that I really don't like doing...i.e.paperwork. I probably spend 1-2 hours every week taking care of paperwork for our business or our home. I can do it-which is why I do do it, but I really don't enjoy it. At all.

What I do enjoy doing is looking through cookbooks and picking out new recipes. My bff gave me 2 new cookbooks for my birthday, and I finally took time this Sunday to look through one of them to pick out recipes to try. Seven caught my eye, and they will find their way to our menu over the next month or so.

Like I've said before, I like food. And I really like dessert. So the perfect new recipe to try out is a dessert recipe. When I make a dessert I am looking for a lot of bang for a little buck. And what fits that description perfectly? Trifles...

All ready for a recent church dinner.
Think about it. You layer cake, fruit or candy, and some kind of cream mixture in a pretty glass bowl for a stunning effect. The Hippie family has a favorite. Its fondly known as Mrs. Johnson's dessert, or punch bowl dessert, or (as I like to refer to it) liquid gold. It regularly makes an appearance at functions where a huge, delicious dessert is required. And it is always a success. It is layers of angel food cake, whipped topping mixed with egg yolk and powdered sugar, and lots of crushed butterfingers. Outstanding!

The key to trifles is the abundance of crushed candy bar. Can you do too much? Probably not. The key to the spectacular look is ending the layering with the candy bars. Trifles are so pretty, with the cakes, the candy, and with the cream oozing down over all like those waterfall rock things in underground caverns. And most trifles feed anywhere from 12-20 people. Invested time for those 12-20 servings is way less than an hour. You can't beat that.

Liquid Gold
1 pound powdered sugar
3 egg yolks
24 ounces whipped topping
Mix together until smooth.
9 large butterfingers, crushed
2 small or 1-1/2 large angel food cakes

-Layer 1/3 of the cake, 1/3 of the cream mixture, and 1/3 of the candy bars in a punch bowl. Repeat layers 3 times, ending with the candy bars. Refrigerate.

I also like the chocolate pudding, brownie trifle my sister in law makes for a lot of the extended Hippie family functions. It incorporates my favorite thing...chocolate brownies, with my favorite candy bar-Heath. How can it be anything but amazing?

Brownie Trifle
9x13 pan of brownies, baked, cooled, 1" cubes
2 boxes of chocolate pudding, mixed up with half the milk
16 ounces of whipped topping
6 to 8 Heath bars, crushed

-Layer in 2 or 3 layers in a 5 quart trifle bowl, ending with candy bars. Refrigerate.

If you are a coffee/chocolate lover, this trifle is for you. It combines artfully arranged lady fingers with grated chocolate and fruit.

Strawberry Tiramisu Trifle
1 quart fresh strawberries-leave 3 whole for garnish and slice the rest
1-1/4 cup cold milk
1 (3.4 ounces)pkg. vanilla pudding mix
1 (8 ounce) cream cheese
4 Tbsp strong brewed coffee at room temperature, divided
8 ounces whipped topping
1 package (3 ounces) lady fingers, split
6 (1 ounce) squares of bittersweet chocolate, grated

-Mix milk and pudding for two minutes. Let sit 2 minutes until soft set.
-Beat cream cheese until smooth. Add 2 T of the coffee to the cream cheese. Beat. Beat in pudding. Fold in whipped topping.
-Brush remaining coffee over lady fingers. Line the bottom of a 3 quart trifle bowl with half the ladyfingers. Top with half the berries, half the chocolate and half the cream. Repeat layers.
-Cut reserved berries in half; place on trifle. Refrigerate 4 hours or overnight.

Maybe you say, "chocolate is not my thing. Coffee is not my thing. Fluffy white cake is not my thing...I like fruit." Well, here is the trifle for you.

Apple Spice Cake Trifle
1 package (18-1/4ounce) spice cake mix
1-1/4 cup cinnamon applesauce
3 eggs
1/3 c oil

-Mix and bake this up in a 9x13 pan at 350 for 35-40 minutes until a tooth pick comes clean. Cool then cut into 1" cubes.

1 can (21 ounces) apple pie filling
1 Tbsp butter
7 tsp cinnamon
3 cups cold milk
2 (3.4 ounce) packages vanilla pudding
16 ounces whipped topping
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
2-3 Heath bars, crushed

-In a saucepan, cook pie filling, butter and 1 tsp of cinnamon until butter is melted, and everything is well blended. Cool.
-Combine milk, pudding mix, whipped topping and remaining cinnamon. Beat on high until thickened, about 5 minutes.
-Spread a third of the pudding cream topping in a 6 quart glass bowl, place half the cake cubes over topping, half the fruit mixture and walnuts and half remaining pudding mixture. Repeat layers.
-Sprinkle with all the Heath bars. Cover and chill for at least 2 hours.

So, why don't you put just a trifle of trifle on your menu this week?