Domestic Amour

"A good home must be made, not bought." - Joyce Maynard

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Why do I feel like I am cheating?

Whenever I make a quick meal using jar tomato sauce or a packet of seasoning....why do I feel like I am cheating? Everyone in today's busy world has to make a quick and easy meal or dessert every now and then. Tonight was a night for a quick dinner pork chops, green beans, pasta roni, and Texas toast. My husband always teases me and says...."so this isn't REALLY cooking, right?" This is beacause if he ever compliments a dish that I do not feel like I have somewhat worked for I tell him that I did not really do anything. I downplay it because it seems as if I have went against everything Martha, Paula, and Julia stand for.

So, after dinner I ask him if I were to bake something what would he want? He picks a recipe that I have not made before but also to me is not REALLY cooking. It is another cheat recipe. He choose a Five Layer Delight recipe that his mother used to make him when he was young. He said it used to be his favorite dessert and he had not had it in years. So, I reluctantly pull out his old church cookbook knowing it would be in there and began to modify the incredibly simple, easy, cheater of a dessert. The orignial recipe called for a pecan crust. That did not sound appetizing to him or I and so I decided to try it with a graham cracker crust. For the cream cheese layer I decided to add a tad of almond extract for a bit of a sweeter flavor and to change it up from just tasting like cream cheese and whip cream mixed. The instant pudding just stayed as instant pudding. As I was finishing up the recipe tonight I was garnishing with curls of Hershey bar and he asked, "What are you doing? My mom never did that. You are just trying to make it fancier." I just smiled at him and he smiled back knowing that I cannot leave any matter how simple...completely alone. The finished product was actually extremely tasty and would be great for any potluck, church dinner, or picnic. Or one of those nights where you have a cheater dinner and need a quick cheater dessert.

Five Layer Delight (my version)

1 stick of butter, melted
2 c. graham cracker crumbs
1/4 c. brown sugar
8 oz. cream cheese
Cool Whip
1 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp almond extract
1 small vanilla instant pudding, prepared
1 small chocolate instant pudding, prepared

Mix together butter, graham cracker crumbs, and powdered sugar. Put into a 9x13 inch glass pan and pack down. Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes. Set aside to cool. Cream together cream cheese, 1 1/2 c. Cool Whip, powdered sugar, and almond extract. Layer on top of crust. Next layer prepared chocolate pudding and then prepared vanilla pudding. Top with remaining Cool Whip. Garnish with grated Hershey bar curls on top. Chill and enjoy!


At 9:16 PM, Blogger Claire said...

This is a recipe my mom has as well. We haven't had it in ages, but I have a FUNNY story about it. We call this "Joe's Surprise" now, because when my brother was probably 3 (he's 20 now), my cousin Joe told him to smell his dessert (the recipe we have here!). Philip, being the trusting little boy he was, put his little nose just over his dessert and smelled. Well...Joe, being the teenager HE was, pushed (rather slammed) Philip's face into the dessert. Pudding and cool whip flew everywhere. Joe's mother proceeded to make all THREE of her children help clean it up and Philip has been scarred for life! :-) So, if anyone tells you to smell this dessert...don't do it!

At 5:40 PM, Anonymous Nicci said...

Sounds like an interesting dessert. I am sure Mike would turn up his nose since he never likes our desserts.

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