Monday, December 15, 2014

Pistachio Cream Dessert

I've been messing around in the kitchen a lot lately because I'm writing yet another cookbook. The dessert I'm going to share with you today is a result of those kitchen endeavors.

For some reason I can't possibly fathom I've been fond of the idea of making Jell-O and/or pudding desserts. They just seem so old-fashioned, easy, and kid-friendly. And with an ever-growing passel of little ones in the Varozza clan, it seemed somehow fitting that I explore this tangent.

So today, I'm going to share with you Pistachio Cream Delight:

Pistachio Cream Delight

First Layer:
1 cup walnuts, finely chopped
2 cups flour
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature

Mix together all ingredients and press into a 9 x 13-inch baking pan. Bake at 350° for 15 minutes; cool completely.
Here's what the baked crust layer looked like when I pulled it from the oven:
I wasn't too impressed, but I kept on going. I soothed myself by thinking that the other layers would soon hide this lumpy, bumpy crust. (Which, by the way, turned out tasting delicious!)
Second Layer:
4 oz. cream cheese
1 cup powdered sugar
1 cup whipping (heavy) cream, sweetened and whipped until soft peaks form (I used about 1 tablespoon sugar and a small amount of vanilla)

Cream together the cream cheese and powdered sugar until smooth. Fold in whipped cream, blending well. Spread evenly over cooled crust.

Third Layer:
2 3½ -oz. boxes instant pistachio pudding
2¾ cups cold milk
1 tsp. vanilla

Mix together all ingredients and beat for 1-2 minutes. Spread over the top of the cream cheese mixture. Refrigerate.
When ready to serve, you can top with more sweetened whipped cream and sprinkle on some chopped walnuts or pistachios if desired.
I know I began this post with a picture of my piece, but it doesn't hurt to end things with the delicious results. Because it was delicious, and so easy that it's the perfect church/family potluck item to whip up in your spare time.
May you and your loved ones, whatever shape that takes in your life and circumstances, be blessed this Christmas season. And may you learn to spot joy in even the most unlikely of places during this time. Were I to ask one thing of you, it would be this: Please, open the eyes of your heart and show love and grace to someone it might be easy to pass by--to not "see." Christmas is the date we have set aside to celebrate the birth of the Christ Child. Let us show our love and reverence for His great work on our behalf by being his hands and feet to those less fortunate. Together we can accomplish so much!

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