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Yuletide Desserts

Baked Cranberry Apples

5 medium baking apples
1/3 cup fresh or frozen cranberries -- chopped
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 tablespoons chopped walnuts
Whipped or sour cream -- optional

Peel each apple about a fourth of the way down; remove core and seeds. In a small bowl, combine cranberries, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and walnuts. Spoon cranberry mixture into center of each apple. Place in a 4-quart or larger slow cooker. Cover and cook on LOW 4 to 5 hours or until apples are tender. Serve warm or at room temperature. Top with whipped or sour cream, if desired.

Makes 5 servings

SOURCE: unknown

Sugar Free Cranberry Apple Crisp

3 cups apples, peeled & sliced
2 cups fresh cranberries
1 cup Equal Spoonful
1/3 cup flour
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1/4 cup margarine, melted
1/2 cup Equal Spoonful

Combine apples, cranberries and 1 cup Equal Spoonful in an ungreased 10-inch glass pie plate. In separate bowl, mix together flour, pecans, margarine and remaining Equal. Sprinkle mixture over top of apples and cranberries. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven about 1 hour or until bubbly and lightly browned.

SOURCE: unknown

Poached Pears in Orange Syrup

3-1/2 cups water
1/2 cup orange juice
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup thin strips orange peel
6 Bosc pears
2 tablespoons orange liqueur or brandy

Combine water, sugar and lemon twist in large saucepan; bring to boil. Pare pears and trim slightly to level bottom; remove core from blossom end, leaving stem intact. Add pears to poaching liquid; reduce heat. Cover and simmer gently about 8 to 10 minutes or until tender with pierced with tip of sharp knife, turn an baste occasionally. Remove pears, reserving 2 cups poaching liquid; stand on flat dish. Cool. Add orange peel to reserved poaching liquid. Boil uncovered 20 minutes or until peel is tender and poaching liquid is thickened and reduced to 1 cup. Stir in orange liqueur. Spoon warm orange peel mixture over cooled pears. Chill until served.

Makes 6 servings.

Per serving: 203 calories, .8 g. protein, .6 g. fat, 49.5 g. carbohydrate, 0 mg. cholesterol, 6 g. fiber and 5 mg. sodium.

SOURCE: unknown

Cranberry Winter Pudding

12-ounce bag of fresh cranberries, picked over
1 firm ripe-pear, peeled, cored, and chopped fine
3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup dried sour cherries (available at specialty foods shops) or golden raisins
1/3 cup finely chopped dried apricots
two 2-inch strips of lemon zest removed with a vegetable peeler
3-inch cinnamon stick
2 cups cranberry juice cocktail
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
about 10 slices of homemade-type white bread, crusts removed
lightly sweetened whipped cream as an accompaniment

In a saucepan combine the cranberries, the pear, the brown sugar, the dried fruit, the zest, the cinnamon stick, the cranberry juice cocktail, the vanilla, and a pinch of salt and simmer the mixture for 10 minutes. Strain the mixture through a sieve into a bowl, reserving the solids, and transfer the cranberry liquid to a shallow dish. Line a 1 1/2-quart soufflé dish with plastic wrap and trim enough of the bread slices to cover the bottom and the side of the dish. Soak the trimmed slices in the cranberry liquid and line the bottom and the side of the soufflé dish with them. Discard the zest and the cinnamon stick from the reserved cranberry solids and add the solids to the soufflé dish. Trim enough of the remaining bread slices to cover the cranberry solids, soak the trimmed slices in the cranberry liquid, and top the cranberry solids with them. Cover the pudding with plastic wrap, put a plate on top of the plastic wrap, and weight the pudding with three 1-pound cans. Chill the pudding, weighted, for at least 12 hours and up to 1 day. Invert the pudding onto a serving plate, discarding the plastic wrap, and serve it, cut into wedges, with the whipped cream.

Serves 6 to 8.

Orange Cranberry Trifle

1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon orange extract, divided
2 cups thawed nondairy whipped topping
1 cup whole berry cranberry sauce
1 (10 - 12 ounces) small loaf pound cake, thinly sliced
1/2 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Garnish: Sliced almonds, Ground Cinnamon

Mix cream cheese, sugar, cinnamon and 1/2 teaspoon orange extract in a large bowl, with electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Gently stir in whipped topping and cranberry sauce. Set aside. Arrange one-third cake slices on bottom of 8-inch square dish. Combine milk, vanilla and 1/2 teaspoon orange extract in a small bowl. Drizzle approximately 2 tablespoons of milk mixture over cake slices. Then spread one-third of cream cheese mixture over cake slices. Repeat for second and third layers using remaining cake slices, milk and cream cheese mixtures. Sprinkle with sliced almonds and cinnamon. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours before serving.

source: McCormick's Flavors of the Season p. 59

Rommegrot Norwegian Jul Pudding

2 pints sour cream
11-12 Tbsp. all-purpose flour to thicken
2-3 cups hot milk
1/2 tsp. salt or to taste
1 tsp. sugar or to taste
melted butter
ground cinnamon

Place the sour cream in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring constantly. Turn down heat and allow to barely simmer for 1 hour, uncovered, to reduce slightly. It must not boil. Use a heat diffuser for this process. Using a flour sifter or strainer, slowly add enough flour to thicken the cream. I use about 11-12 Tbsp. for a very thick pudding. Using a wire whisk, whip in the flour 1 Tbsp. at a time. The cream will thicken and start to pull away from the sides of the pan. If the sour cream is very rich, the butter will now begin to form and rise tot he top. Remove this with a spoon and set it aside. Stir in enough hot milk to obtain a porridge-like consistency. Add sugar and salt to taste. Serve in bowls with melted butter, sugar, and cinnamon on top.

Serves 8-10

Eggnog and Cranberry Salad

1 (3.5 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
1 (3 ounce) package lemon flavored gelatin
2 cups water
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 (3 ounce) package raspberry flavored gelatin mix
1 cup boiling water
1 (16 ounce) can jellied cranberry sauce
1/4 cup chopped pecans
1 (1.3 ounce) envelope whipped topping mix
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Combine vanilla pudding mix, lemon gelatin, and 2 cups water in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Stir in lemon juice. Chill until partially set. Dissolve raspberry gelatin in 1 cup boiling water. Blend in cranberry sauce, and add pecans. Chill until partially set. Prepare whipped topping according to package directions. Fold in nutmeg. Fold whipped topping into vanilla pudding mixture. Pour into a 9 x 13 inch glass dish. Chill until firm. Pour cranberry mixture over pudding mixture. Chill for 6 hours before serving.

Makes 9 servings


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