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Jun 25, 2013 10:48 AM

Need a quick dessert and out of inspiration!

I'm having some friends coming over for a casual bbq tonight and completely forgot to plan for dessert. (Menu is cheese/crackers, hummus/veggies, asada, bbq chicken, corn).

I could pick something up on the way home, but would rather try to whip something up when I get home. I'll probably have 30 minutes to throw something together. I thought about maybe mixing up a batch of homemade ice cream (I'm a newbie ice cream maker) and baking brownies, but I'm not sure I will have time to both setup and set after mixing.

Anyone have any quick go-to desserts they churn out that's company worthy?

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  1. You could do a nice fruit crisp with mixed berries and serve with whipped cream (or your homemade ice cream).

    Also - chocolate fondue with fruit skewers and pieces of pound cake. Easy and guests love it.

    And if you keep the BBQ going, S'mores! :o)

    4 Replies
    1. re: Sra. Swanky

      Second the general fruit crisp/cobbler/crumble. Perfect season for it with all the berries and stone fruits and super easy to throw together.

      1. re: Sra. Swanky

        Another vote for a fruit crisp, or even a fruit pizza, buy some pre-made dough and do it on the grill!

        1. re: Sra. Swanky

          Love the S'mores idea! But am fairly certain DH won't let a melty marshmallow anywhere near his new grill. :(

          1. re: The Oracle

            Maybe if you promise to be extra careful with the melty marshmallows? C'mon, Hubby - it's summer! What's summer without s'mores?! :)

        2. If you have soda crackers, walnuts, whipped cream and fruit, let me recommend Soda Cracker Pie. Perfect for summer, easy and delicious.

          Here goes....Soda Cracker Pie Crust

          3 egg whites, beaten stiff. Add 1 cup sugar (the amount can be reduced) and 1 tsp vanilla. Roll 16 double soda crackers fine but not too fine. Add 1/2 tsp baking powder. Fold in egg mixture. Add 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped. Butter a 9X9 pan and bake in 325 oven for 30 minutes. When cool serve with sweetened strawberries or peaches and top with a layer of whipped cream.

          8 Replies
          1. re: tcamp

            Are soda crackers similar to saltines? I have a ton of unsalted saltines to use up and 3 egg whites in the fridge waiting for a creative use...

                1. re: thursday

                  I have to reply a 2nd time with a great big THANK YOU! This is so easy and so tasty it has instantaneously become my summer go-to - I cooked it in a 10" springform for looks, and it came out perfectly - crispy on top, chewy in the middle and perfect with all this fresh fruit I've been getting from the farmer's market. We're making it again for our July 4th party!

                  1. re: thursday

                    I'm glad you like it. I'm going to make one this weekend using peaches.

            1. re: tcamp

              My mom used to make something like this. Haven't had it in years but will definitely try your version. What do you mean by "double" soda crackers? I buy Premium saltines and they come singly in sleeves.

              1. re: Isolda

                it is a pretty old recipe and I think saltines used come in pairs so just double up the singletons.

                1. re: tcamp

                  I'm going to reveal my age and say I remember when saltines came in fours!

            2. Fruit platter? Whipped cream, ganache on side.

              Crepes if you're feeling up to it

              1. nothing beats strawberry shortcake. Nothing.

                11 Replies
                1. re: ChipPaulson

                  Agreed as long as you get good strawberries.

                  1. re: ChipPaulson

                    That's what I was going to suggest. Making the biscuits only requires about 10 minutes of work time, 15 minutes in the oven. Macerate the strawberries while the biscuits are baking. Whipped cream can be made and held in fridge, or whipped up just before serving. It's peak strawberry season here right now, and I can't get enough of them.

                      1. re: The Oracle

                        Sure, this recipe never fails me:

                        2 cups all purpose flour
                        1.5 tablespoons sugar
                        3 teaspoons baking powder
                        2/3 teaspoon salt
                        2/3 teaspoon baking soda
                        1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
                        1.5 cups buttermilk

                        Preheat oven to 425 F. Whisk dry ingredients in large bowl to blend. Using fingertips, rub the butter into dry ingredients until mixture resembles coarse meal (or you can pulse in a food processor). Make a well in the dry ingredients, add buttermilk and stir gently until evenly moistened. It will be wet and sticky (you can reduce the buttermilk by a quarter cup if you prefer a drier dough).

                        For drop biscuits, spray a 1/4 cup measuring cup and drop biscuits onto baking sheet lined with parchment, spacing 2 inches apart.

                        For cut biscuits, turn dough onto a floured surface. Dust the top with flour, flour your hands and fold and gently flatten the dough 5 or 6 times. Cut out with a 2" biscuit cutter. Place on baking sheet lined with parchment, lightly touching each other (you can also place into a greased and floured round cake pan).

                        Bake until biscuits are golden brown on top, about 15 minutes.

                        1. re: TorontoJo

                          beautiful! thank you for posting.

                          In my search (for future use), I also found this thread:

                          I'm now wondering the difference between biscuits made with heavy cream or half & half vs. biscuits made with buttermilk. I always make scones with buttermilk, so I'm guessing it will be similar in texture to them (which is a GOOD thing)... but, I've never made a cream scone so I have nothing to gauge it by. Any thoughts?

                          1. re: The Oracle

                            I found this post re: buttermilk vs. heavy cream - but I'm not sure it helps me decide which to use!


                            1. re: The Oracle

                              I've had many a biscuit style and have loved them all (except for those that were dry, tasteless hockey pucks, of course).

                              I've made biscuits with both and haven't found a huge difference. The recipe I posted above is a pretty genuine Southern biscuit -- it's wonderfully tender (and flaky, if you use the fold and cut method), tasty and buttery. I think you will find the texture of biscuits to be softer than scones in general.

                              1. re: TorontoJo

                                I'm definitely trying your recipe tonight!

                                I don't have a biscuit cutter, though, and may make square shapes (using a knife to cut - as I've never had good luck cutting dough with a cup/glass).

                                About how many cut biscuits does the recipe make? And, Is the dough still sticky after folding 5 or 6 times?

                                And - when you stir in the wet ingredients, what utensil do you use to stir? When I make scones, I toss it with a fork until just combined and then knead with my hands until formed.... I'm thinking there may be a preferred method for biscuits that I don't want to overlook!

                                1. re: The Oracle

                                  It makes around a dozen or so biscuits when I use a 2" cutter.

                                  The dough will still be a bit sticky after folding (though not if you reduce the buttermilk). To stir in the buttermilk, I use a silicon spatula with a slight scoop shape or just a simple wooden spoon. I use sort of a folding motion. I don't knead, as I would worry about overworking the dough. And when I fold in half, I just flatten with my fingers rather than rolling. It's a pretty rough, quick technique, so I don't worry too much about fussing with it.

                                  Hope it turns out well for you! :)

                                  1. re: The Oracle

                                    An aluminum can (empty and cleaned of course) works pretty well as a biscuit cutter.

                                2. re: The Oracle

                                  I really prefer the buttermilk.

                                  I've had ones that were done with butter and heavy cream and they really coat your mouth and leave you feeling way too oily.

                                  At least that's how they affect me : )

                        2. If you can whip up homemade ice cream and brownies in 1/2 hour you don't need our help!

                          Honestly, I used to think I had to make everything for a party. But if you are working and short on time I would stop and get some good ice cream and a bunch of stuff to top it with and make your own sundaes. Less stressful for you and people will love it.