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Easy Elegant Desserts

May 9, 2009 | by Emuna Braverman

Five out of this world, elegant and easy desserts.

I have a confession to make. I love desserts. Baking desserts and eating desserts. I've never seen a dessert cookbook that wasn't immediately followed by a debit to my bank account! You won't catch me in a bakery buying dessert. I'm far too obsessive-compulsive for that. But what I do like are easy, elegant desserts. And I'm going to share my favorites with you.


Long before the cake mix doctor rose to popularity, my mother gave me this cookie recipe -- these are really easy and really good. All children can make them and all adults love them.

1 yellow cake mix
1/2 cup canola oil
2 eggs
1 cup sweetened flaked coconut
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease two cookie sheets. Mix all ingredients together (batter will be thick) and drop by the tablespoonful on prepared cookie sheets. Bake for 10 minutes. Allow to rest on cookie sheets for 3-5 minutes before removing.

Variation: If you like chocolate, substitute a swiss chocolate cake mix for the yellow cake mix. Note that the swiss chocolate is dairy whereas the yellow is probably pareve.


My friend Elizabeth shared this treasure. I frequently leave out the chocolate chips because it's sooo rich.

1 devil's food cake mix
1 pkg. (4-1/2 ounces) instant chocolate pudding
1/2 cup brewed coffee
4 eggs
1 cup tofutti sour cream (to make it pareve)
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup dark rum or coffee liqueur
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Greased a 10-12 cup bundt pan. Mix all ingredients together and pour into prepared pan. Bake for 55-60 minutes. Allow to cool into pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto rack to finish cooling. When completely cool, glaze.


1 box (1 pound) powdered sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 tablespoons margarine
1/3 cup hot brewed coffee

Cream together all ingredients and pour over cake.


This is a raved about chocolate creation. It's embarrassing when people ask for the recipe.

2 boxes pareve brownie mix
1 cup pareve (non-dairy) whip
1 pound semisweet chocolate, broken into pieces

Bake brownies in 9 x 13 pan according to package directions. When cool prepare ganache. Over low heat melt chocolate with pareve whip, stirring constantly. When mixture is thick and all chocolate is melted, pour over brownies. Allow to cool briefly and refrigerate. This is an intense chocolate experience.


I adapted this truffle tart from Debbie Fields' Great American Desserts. It's simple, looks fancy and your guests will be blown away. “You made this?!"

You will need a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom for this recipe. It's worth the investment.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.


1/2 cups toasted pecans
6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
2 tablespoons cold margarine, cut into pieces

Combine the pecans, flour, brown sugar, nutmeg and margarine in a food processor and pulse until the nuts are crushed and mixture is a paste. Press over the bottom and up the sides of tart pan. Bake for 15 minutes, then remove to rack to cool.


1-3/4 cups pareve (non-dairy) whip
1 pound semisweet chocolate, broken into pieces
2 large egg yolks
1 tablespoon vanilla

Heat whip and chocolate over low heat, stirring until chocolate melts and mixture is smooth. Stir in egg yolks and vanilla and mix well. Cook over low heat until thick. Pour into prebaked crust and chill for at least 4 hours. (I frequently keep in the freezer until about 1/2 hour before serving)


I borrowed this recipe from the Yated Neeman newspaper.


2 cups graham cracker crumbs
5 tablespoons margarine, melted

Mix together and press into bottom of 9 or 10-inch spring form pan.


1 cup pareve whip
1 jar (7 ounces) marshmallow fluff
1 can (29 ounces) lemon pie filling

Beat whip until stiff peaks form. Beat in marshmallow fluff and then lemon pie filling. Pour into prepared crust and freeze, covered. Allow to soften in refrigerator 1/2 hour before serving.




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