Thursday, June 21, 2012

Busy in the Kitchen


Hello everyone.  With Ian home for the summer, I find that I am in the kitchen a bit more than normal.  Ian has a list of favorite entrees that he likes for me to prepare during his visits to Aiken.  The entrees he asks for me to make are still a bit advanced for his culinary skills:  Greek Chicken Pie (in Phyllo with Feta), Moroccan Chicken Pie (with saffron and golden raisins), Beef Bourguignonne, Steamed Mussels, and our Stone Grill dinner (featured in this post from Easter).

Last night's dinner was the stone grill!  We dinned on steak, chicken breast, jumbo shrimp and scallops - all cooked to divine tenderness on the stone grill.  Oh yes, and there were side dishes too... but blah... It was ALL about the stone grilled meats/seafood and the dessert!!


Since the entree was one of Ian's favorites, dessert was one of mine and Doug's favorites - Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle!!  Yummo.  There are a lot of varied recipes for this dessert available all over the Internet.  In fact my original recipe was from a food blog.  However, over the last couple of years I have modified my basic recipe and find that we like it better.  So in the interest of sharing all of the goodness of summer captured in a single bowl, below you will find my latest version of this fabulous dessert. I have lightened the recipe by using light or fatfree products, replacing some of the sugar with Splenda, reducing the powdered sugar in the cheesecake mixture, and reducing the quantity of Cool Whip by one quarter.  And even with all of those changes, we like this lighter version better!



Strawberry Cheesecake Trifle

2 Quarts of Strawberries, hulled and sliced.
1/4 Cup of sugar (I used Splenda)
1.5 Tablespoons of Almond Extract (or depending on your tastes and guests - 1.5 Tbsp of vodka)
- - - - - - - - - - - - - -

2 8-oz blocks of cream cheese, softened (I used light)
1 Cup of powdered sugar
1 Cup of sour cream (I used fatfree)
1 tsp of vanilla extract
12 oz tub of Cool Whip (light)
1 large Angel Food Cake

Prep:
Mix sliced berries with sugars and extract (or alcohol) and set aside to rest (reserve a few to garnish).

In mixer bowl beat cream cheese until creamy.  Add sour cream, powdered sugar and vanilla extract.  Mix until smooth.  Fold in the cool whip.

Slice the cake into bite size pieces

Assembly:
Place half of the cake pieces into a large trifle or clear bowl.  Top with half of the strawberry mixture.  Add a layer of half of the cream cheese mixture.  Repeat the layers ending with the cream cheese mixture.  Add the garnish berries to the top of the trifle. 

Refrigerate for 2 hours and serve chilled.




As an added note, having Ian home is playing havoc with my dieting.... I have been stuck at the same weight since he arrived home two weeks ago!  I suspect the list of entrees above (that we have only had half of so far) and desserts like this one my be part of the problem.  Hopefully I can be back to normal in a few weeks with lighter fare!

Thanks for stopping by today.  I have a cute baby project to share with your tomorrow!!






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