March 30 2017

Sweet Talk: Dessert for a crowd the easy way

A few easy (and seasonal) ways to serve dessert to guests at home

For some home cooks entertaining a crowd, it’s enough to get a first and second course on the table—homemade dessert may seem like a bridge too far. No matter.

It’s incredibly easy to take shortcuts and still come away looking classy and brilliant.

Some winning ideas include vanilla yogurt with a swirl of fig jam and a sprinkle of candied nuts; your own assembled ice cream sandwiches, pound cake “croutons” (toasted cubes) tossed in fruit salad and parfaits with whipped cream, fruit and cookies of your choosing.

A few steps can yield big results: Buy a pint of your favorite local ice cream and serve it with lightly macerated raspberries. Melt some chocolate and dip a few strawberries. Poach some rhubarb and serve it over store-bought angel food cake. Keep a high quality store-bought cookie dough in your freezer (Condiment in the Reading Terminal Market is a good bet) and bring it out to bake off a batch as needed.

Or if turning on the oven or stove sounds too laborious, go even simpler. A selection of chocolates, particularly exotic ones, can make a fun end-of-the-meal game as guests guess their mystery fillings

Affogato—a scoop of ice cream with espresso and liqueur poured over it—will impress with a minimum of effort needed. And no one will turn up their nose at a thoughtful cheese platter with some dried or candied fruit and nuts. 

Read other Spring 2017 Newsletter articles

Seasonal Musings
Community News
Party in Focus
The Takeaway
At Home by Steve Poses
By the Glass
TFI News