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Whipped cream isn’t just for berries

Cathie Campbell/For The Madera Tribune
Whipped cream is excellent as a finishing touch for most puddings and desserts.


When I was a kid, I loved to lick the beaters when my mom made whipped cream, frosting or even cake batter. Even though there were few things better than homemade strawberry shortcake, over the years I was delighted to find out that whipped cream could be used for a lot of other desserts. I also liked whipped topping, as its convenience was appreciated by busy cooks everywhere.


If you’re looking for a way to make Father’s Day (June 18) a little more special, what dad wouldn’t love a dessert made with whipped cream? Join me today in exploring some recipes that make good use of both the whipped topping and cream.
 
Banana cream squares


3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) chilled butter
1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup chopped pecans, divided
1 package (8-oz.) cream cheese, softened
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 container (16-oz.) frozen whipped topping, thawed and divided
4 ripe bananas
2 packages (4 servings each) banana or vanilla instant pudding and pie filling
3 cups cold milk

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Using cooking spray, lightly coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

  2. In a large bowl, cut butter into flour until mixture is crumbly. Add 1/2 cup chopped pecans and mix well. Press crumb mixture firmly into prepared baking dish. Bake 10 to 15 minutes or until crust is golden brown. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

  3. In a large bowl, with electric mixer on medium, beat cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar until well blended. Mix in half the whipped topping, then turn mixture out onto cooled crust, spreading evenly.

  4. Slice bananas into 1/4-inch pieces, then arrange over the top of the cream cheese mixture.

  5. In a large bowl, with electric mixer on medium, beat the pudding mix and cold milk until very creamy and smooth. Spoon mixture over the banana slices, then top with remaining whipped topping, finishing with remaining chopped pecans. Cover and chill at least 1 hour before serving. Makes 12 servings.

 
Frozen lemon raspberry dessert


From the folks at Land O’ Lakes. Best to make this a day ahead.

Crust:
1 1/4 cups (about 35) crushed vanilla wafer cookies
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cups butter, melted


Filling:
1 cup fresh raspberries (reserve 12)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 pint (2 cups) heavy whipping cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 jars (10-oz. each) lemon curd

  1. In mixing bowl, combine all crust ingredients and blend well. Press firmly into bottom of ungreased 9-inch square pan and set aside.

  2. In bowl, gently stir together the raspberries and 1 tablespoon sugar; set aside.

  3. In a chilled bowl, combine whipping cream and vanilla. Beat at high speed, scraping bowl occasionally, for 3 to 4 minutes or until stiff peaks form. Reserve 1 cup of whipped cream. Gently stir lemon curd into remaining whipped cream and spoon into prepared crust.

  4. Gently swirl raspberries through lemon mixture. Frost top with reserved whipped cream. Cover and freeze at least 8 hours or overnight until firm.

  5. Let stand at room temperature for about 10 minutes before serving. Just before serving, garnish with reserved raspberries. Makes 12 servings.


Pumpkin delight


In case you didn’t get your fill of pumpkin goodies last fall. I love pumpkin all year round.

1 cup flour
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup plus 1/4 cup chopped pecans
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
3 cups whipped topping, divided
2 1/2 cups cold milk
3 small (3.4-oz. each) packages white chocolate instant pudding mix (or vanilla or pumpkin flavor if you can find it)
1 can (15-oz.) pumpkin puree
1 teaspoon pumpkin spice

  1. Preheat oven to 350. Layer 1: Mix flour, butter and 1/2 cup pecans. Press mixture into a 9-by-9-inch or 9-by-13-inch pan lightly coated with cooking spray. (If you would like more crust add an additional 1/2 cup flour, 1/4 cup butter and 1/4 cup chopped pecans.) Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes; remove and allow to cool.

  2. Layer 2: Mix cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar. Add 1 cup of the whipped topping and spread mixture over cooled crust.

  3. Layer 3: Mix milk, pudding mix, pumpkin puree, pumpkin spice and 1 cup of whipped topping until smooth. Spread over the cream cheese layer.

  4. Layer 4: Spread the remaining 1 cup whipped topping and remaining chopped pecans. Refrigerate for 3 hours or until set. Makes 9 to 12 servings, depending on size of pan.

 
Ambrosia


There are several versions of ambrosia and this one appeals to me (and dinner guests) a lot. Hope you like it too.

2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
2 tablespoons butter, softened
1 container (8-oz.) frozen whipped topping, thawed (or use real whipped cream)
1 jar (10-oz.) maraschino cherries, drained and cut in half
1 can (20-oz.) pineapple chunks, drained
1 can (11-oz.) Mandarin oranges, drained
2 cups miniature marshmallows
1 cup flaked coconut

  1. Place eggs in the top of a double boiler (or in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water) and, over medium-low heat, add vinegar and sugar, stirring constantly 5 to 7 minutes, or until mixture is slightly thick and smooth. Remove from heat, stir in butter, and let cool.

  2. When mixture is cool, fold in whipped topping until the mixture is well blended, then fold in cherries, pineapple, oranges, marshmallows and coconut.

  3. Place mixture into an attractive serving bowl and chill at least 4 hours before serving. Makes 12 servings.