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Heavenly Holiday Desserts

December 21, 2008

They look impressive and taste divine, but the really extraordinary thing about these fabulous desserts from Southern Living is how easy they are to prepare.

Double Citrus Tart
Mary Allen Perry

Easy as icebox pie, this party-pretty tart pairs the bright fresh flavors of lemon and orange with a crisp gingersnap crust. It’s just the right finish for a rich holiday meal, and freezes beautifully. Prepare the tart up to 1 month ahead, omitting the whipped cream and garnish; chill as directed. Remove the metal rim of the tart pan; cover and freeze in a zip-top freezer bag. Thaw overnight in refrigerator; add whipped cream and garnish up to 4 hours before serving.

Prep: 30 min., Bake: 25 min., Chill: 4 hrs.

YieldMakes 8 to 10 servings

 

Ingredients

 

  • 1 1/2 cups crushed gingersnap cookies
  • 5 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/3 cup frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 large eggs, separated
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • Garnishes: fresh mint leaves, lemon and orange slices

PreparationStir together first 4 ingredients. Press mixture evenly into a 9-inch tart pan with removable bottom; set aside.

 

Whisk together sweetened condensed milk, orange juice concentrate, lemon juice, and egg yolks until blended.

Beat egg whites at medium speed with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form; fold into condensed milk mixture. Pour into prepared crust.

Bake at 325° for 20 to 25 minutes or just until filling is set. Remove to a wire rack, and let cool completely. Cover and chill at least 4 hours. Remove tart from pan, and place on a serving dish.

Beat whipping cream and granulated sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Dollop around edges of tart; garnish, if desired.

Mary Ann Lee, Marco Island, Florida, Southern Living, MARCH 2005

Chocolate Fudge Cheese Cake

Mary Allen Perry

Never fearing too much of a good thing, SL topped their best-ever brownie batter with a ribbon of feather-light cheesecake, and poured on a chocolate truffle glaze.

The recipe makes 2 triple-layered treats – perfect for serving a crowd or sharing as a gift.

Prep: 30 min.; Bake: 1 hr., 15 min.; Chill: 8 hrs.

YieldMakes 2 (9-inch) cheesecakes

 

Ingredients

 

  • 1/2 cup toasted, chopped pecans
  • 4 (1-ounce) unsweetened chocolate baking squares
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 4 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar
  • 7 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2 Chocolate Glaze (follows)
  • Garnishes: fresh mint sprigs, sliced strawberries

PreparationSprinkle 1/2 cup pecans evenly over the bottom of each of 2 greased and floured 9-inch springform pans.

 

Microwave chocolate squares in a microwave-safe bowl at MEDIUM (50% power) 1 1/2 minutes, stirring at 30-second intervals until melted. Stir until smooth.

Beat butter and 2 cups sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add 4 eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Add melted chocolate, beating just until blended.

Add flour, beating at low speed just until blended. Stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla and chocolate morsels. Divide batter evenly between pans, spreading over chopped pecans.

Beat cream cheese at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth; add 1 3/4 cups sugar, beating until blended. Add 7 eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Stir in 2 teaspoons vanilla. Divide cream cheese mixture evenly between each pan, spreading over brownie batter.

Bake at 325° for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until set. Remove from oven; cool completely on wire racks.

Spread top of each cooled cheesecake with 1 recipe Chocolate Glaze; cover and chill 8 hours. Remove sides of pans before serving. Garnish, if desired.

Note: We topped each cheesecake with 1 full recipe of Chocolate Glaze. For a thinner layer of chocolate on top, divide 1 recipe of glaze between the two cakes.

Southern Living, DECEMBER 2005Chocolate Glaze

 

Yield Makes about 2 cups

 

Ingredients

 

  • 1 (12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate morsels
  • 1/2 cup whipping cream

PreparationMelt 1 (12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate morsels and 1/2 cup whipping cream in a 2-quart microwave-safe bowl at MEDIUM (50% power) 2 1/2 to 3 minutes or until chocolate begins to melt. Whisk until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth.

 

Southern Living, DECEMBER 2005


Raspberry Tiramisù Bites

Photo: William Dickey; Styling: Lisa Powell Bailey

These luscious little gems are so quick to fix you can make dozens at a time. Inexpensive shot glasses sparkle as contemporary dessert dishes. For large parties, miniature (5-oz.) clear-plastic tumblers, available from party stores, are a great option.

Prep: 30 min., Chill: 2 hr. There are crisp Italian cookies also called ladyfingers, but be sure to use soft ones in this recipe. Look for them in the bakery or produce section of your supermarket.

YieldMakes 8 servings

 

Ingredients

 

  • 3 tablespoons seedless raspberry preserves
  • 1 tablespoon orange liqueur
  • 1 (3-oz.) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 8 ladyfingers, halved crosswise
  • 8 fresh raspberries
  • Garnish: fresh mint sprigs

Preparation1. Microwave raspberry preserves in a small microwave-safe bowl at HIGH 20 seconds. Stir in liqueur.

 

2. Beat cream cheese and sugar at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy (about 1 minute).

3. Beat heavy cream with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Fold into cream cheese mixture. Spoon into a zip-top plastic bag. (Do not seal.) Snip 1 corner of bag with scissors to make a hole (about 1/2 inch in diameter).

4. Press 1 ladyfinger half onto bottom of 1 (1 1/2-oz.) shot glass. Repeat procedure with 7 more shot glasses. Drizzle about 1/2 tsp. raspberry mixture into each glass. Pipe a small amount of cream cheese mixture evenly into each glass. Repeat procedure with remaining ladyfingers, raspberry mixture, and cream cheese mixture. Top each glass with 1 raspberry. Cover and chill 2 hours. Garnish, if desired.

Stephanie Hawkins, Charleston, South Carolina, Southern Living, MARCH 2008Source: Southern Living

 

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