Category Archives: Desserts

Rainbow Jell-O

For a printable Word version, click here.
(From the kitchen of Margie Hamaguchi)
Servings: 36+


1 sm (3 oz.) box of each Jell-O flavors – Lime, Lemon, Orange and Strawberry
6 envelopes Knox Gelatin
5 C boiling water
1 (15 oz.) can Eagle Brand sweetened condensed milk

Jell-O Mixture:  Dissolve each package of Jell-O with 1 envelope Knox Gelatin in 1 cup boiling water in a separate small bowl.  (Stir well so that gelatin does not settle).

Milk Mixture:  Dissolve 2 envelopes of Knox Gelatin in 1 Cup boiling water and mix in 1 can sweetened condensed milk.  Divide mixture into 3 equal parts (a little less than ¾ cup each).

Pour 1st layer of Jell-O into 9”x 9” Tupperware pan lightly greased with mayonnaise.  (This is a little trick to keep Jell-O squares from sticking to pan.)  Set pan on level shelf in freezer for 12-14 min. until Jell-O is firm.  Then add 1st layer of milk mixture and set in freezer for 12 min. until firm.  Repeat this layering process with the remaining Jell-O and milk mixture.

Note:  If the Jell-O or milk mixture gets lumpy or thick towards the end, microwave for a 10 seconds and stir thoroughly before pouring it on the next layer.  Be careful not to leave in the freezer too long so that crystals form around the edges because it will cause the layers to come apart when served).  Chill overnight in refrigerator.  Cut into squares.  Serves 36+



Lemon bars

(For a printable version, click here)

lemonbar (Small)
Lemon Bars
(from the kitchen of Lei Wai)

2 Cups, plus 4 TSP, all-purpose flour, divided
1  Cup butter, softened
½  Cup powdered sugar
4  Eggs
1½ Cups sugar
2/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (not bottled) approx. 2 – 2 ½ lemons
1 TSB grated lemon rind
1  tsp baking powder

Preheat oven to 350F

Combine 2 cups of flour with butter and powdered sugar, mix with chopsticks or spoons until mixture looks like coarse meal.  Press into the bottom of a 13×9-in baking pan.  Bake 20 to 25 minutes

Beat eggs with a mixer, add sugar, blend well.  Add lemon juice and lemon rind; beat well.  Add baking powder and remaining flour; beat well.  Pour over hot crust (do not let it cool).  Bake another 30-35 minutes.  Sprinkle top with additional powdered sugar.  Serves 24.

Chocolate chip date cake

cake (Small)
Chocolate chip date cake
(From the kitchen of Tanya Chen)

1 cup of chopped dates
1 cup boiling water
1 tsp baking soda
Mix together and allow to cool

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix together in a large mixing bowl the following ingredients:
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp of cocoa powder
1/2 tsp of salt
1 cup of vegetable oil
2 eggs
1 tsp of vanilla flavoring

Beat until smooth then gradually add 1 3/4 cup of flour and the date mixture from above and beat for another 30 seconds. Pour into 9 x 13 baking dish or into muffin cups.  Before baking sprinkle 1/2 cup of sugar over the top of the batter then do the same with 1/2 c of chopped nuts and 1 cup of chocolate chips.  Bake large cake for 35 to 40 minutes.  Bake cupcakes for 26 minutes.

Cake can be served warm or cold.

Working with fondant

No fail sugar cookies recipe: click here for a printable version
Fondant instructions: click here for a printable version
Cupcake fondant roses: see below

(from Kitchen Collectables)

This recipe is GREAT when using complex cookie cutters.  The dough holds its shape and won’t spread during baking.  Make sure you let your oven preheat for at least 1/2 hour before baking these or any other cookies.

6 cups flour
3 tsp. baking powder
2 cups butter
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract or desired flavoring (e.g., almond)
1 tsp. salt

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Add eggs and vanilla.  Mix well. Mix dry ingredients and add a little at a time to butter mixture.  Mix until flour is completely incorporated and the dough comes together.

Chill for 1 to 2 hours (or see Hint below)

Roll to desired thickness and cut into desired shapes.  Bake on ungreased baking sheet at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until just beginning to turn brown around the edges.  This recipe can make up to 5-dozen 3” cookies.

HINT: Rolling Out Dough Without the Mess — Rather than wait for your cookie dough to chill, take the freshly made dough and place a glob between two sheets of parchment paper.  Roll it out to the desired thickness then place the dough and paper on a cookie sheet and pop it into the refrigerator.  Continue rolling out your dough between sheets of paper until you have used it all.  By the time you are finished, the first batch will be completely chilled and ready to cut.  Reroll leftover dough and repeat the process!  An added bonus is that you are not adding any additional flour to your cookies.

Fondant Instructions
(From the kitchen of Judy Wong)

 Fondant is available at Michael’s, JoAnn’s, and cake decorating stores like Do It With Icing, which is located at 7240 Clairemont Mesa Blvd / 858-268-1234 (one block west of 99 Market).

From package, break out a chunk of fondant.  Re-seal package so that the fondant does not dry out.  Knead fondant until workable and roll out onto a silicone sheet, parchment or wax paper.  Use a pair of skewers to keep fondant uniform in size. (It’s optional if you want to lightly dust work surface with powdered sugar or cornstarch.)  Lift and move the fondant as you roll.  This will prevent it from sticking to the surface.

Cookies with fondant:

1. Bake your favorite sugar cookie recipe or use the No Fail Sugar Cookie recipe provided above.

2. Cut fondant with same shape cookie cutters as used in your sugar cookies.

3. Brush cookies with shortening.

4. Place cut fondant on top of cookie.  Press to cover to edge of cookie (okay to have some edge of cookie showing).

5. Decorate cookies by adding texture, luster dust, edible pearls, fondant flowers* and piped icing.

Notes about fondant:

— *Fondant flowers can be cut out and shaped ahead of time.  Use piped icing to adhere to decorated cookies.

— Fondant cookies can keep for two weeks.  Best to keep in cellophane bag – not in Tupperware containers.  Do not put fondant cookies or fondant cupcakes in refrigerator.

— Fondant dries quickly.  Always keep covered to prevent drying when in use.  Leftover fondant should be tightly sealed in plastic wrap and kept in airtight container. Fondant has a shelf life of one year, as long as it is covered up.  Its enemy is air.  Do not refrigerate fondant.

Cupcake fondant roses
(From Bakerella)

For roses, cut rolled fondant into strips.  Roll strips and shape into roses.  Place on top of cupcakes.

Matcha chocolate chip cake

For a printable version, click here
(From the kitchen of Kathy Lee)

4 eggs
1 3/4 cup flour
1 1/2 cup sugar
3/4 cup butter softened;
2 Tbsp Matcha (green tea powder, $3.99 @ 99 Ranch)
8 oz. Chocolate Chips

Add sugar to softened butter and mix well. In a separate bowl whisk eggs, then mix eggs and butter mixture together. Sift flour and Matcha together, then
add it to the egg and butter mixture mixing well. Last, add chocolate chips. Coat the inside of a medium loaf pan with butter then place baking wax paper inside.
Pour batter into the pan. Bake in preheated 360F oven for 35 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.

Baked nian gao

For a printable version, click here
(From the kitchen of Menie Lee)

16 oz. Mochiko sweet rice flour ($1.79 @ 99 Ranch)
One stick of butter or 3/4 cup of vegetable oil
3 eggs
2 1/2 cups milk
1 cup sugar
1 Tbl baking soda
One can of red azuki beans ($3.99 @ 99 Ranch)

Sprinkle some Mochiko flour over a 9″x13″ baking dish that has been oiled or sprayed with Pam.

Mix everything (including remaining Mochiko flour) but the beans with an electric mixer at medium speed for 2 minutes. Beat for 2 more minutes at high speed.

Spread half of the batter on the bottom of the baking pan. Spread the red azuki beans (you can mix some batter into the beans if they are too thick to spread). Spread the other half of the batter over the red azuki beans. Bake in oven at 350 degrees for 40 to 50 minutes. Test for doneness by inserting a chopstick (this is Chinese New Year Cake after all), if it comes out clean, it is done.

Chinese almond float dessert

Karen Quon shared this refreshing dessert at our February 2010 meeting.

▪Soften 3 pkgs. unflavored gelatin with ½ c. cold water in heatproof bowl for 5 min.
▪Add 2- 1/2 c. boiling water and stir until clear.
▪Add 2/3 c. granulated sugar and stir until dissolved.
▪Add 1-3/4 c. milk and stir (any combinations of milks: non-fat, 2%, whole, evaporated, coconut milk. Karen prefers 2% milk or combo of 2% and 1/4 c. coconut milk.)
▪Add 1 tablespoon almond extract and stir.

Pour into a 9 x 12 OR 9 x 9 glass pan.  Refrigerate 3-4 hours (or less) until firmly set.

Yield: 3- 3/4 c. = 7 servings @ 1/2 c. each

Boil 1 c. water with 1/3 c. granulated sugar.  Pour into large serving bowl and chill completely.

To serve, cut the gelatin into ¾” squares or diamonds and combine into the chilled syrup, separating pieces as you go. (Gently lift out squares with a thin metal spatula)
▪Add fruit: 1 can drained cold lychees and 1 can drained cold mandarin  Oranges

Petit fours

For printable version, click here
(From the kitchen of Judy Wong)

Lady Judy's purple petit fours

1 box Pillsbury cake mix (white or yellow)
Filling of your choice (Bavarian, lemon cream)
1 lb. tub of truffle icing
Buttercream icing (optional)

 Make cake as directed on cake mix.  Pour batter into jelly roll pan.  Bake as instructed.

After baking, flip cake to cool; cut in half.  Fill the top of one of the halves with filling.  Then top with second half of the cake.  Wrap in plastic wrap and freeze (several hours or overnight).  When ready to dip cake, trim off ends.  Use serrated knife to cut into 1″ x 1″.

Melt truffle icing in microwave.  Truffle icing burns easily – know your microwave!  Estimated time of microwaving a full tub of truffle icing is usually 30 seconds, but start with 15-20 seconds if you’re not sure about your microwave.  After microwaving, if not completely melted, stir and microwave (even less time) again.

Before dipping each cake square, trim if necessary so that sides are straight.  Skewer bottom of cake, dip, and let excess icing drip.  Then lift cake with fork; remove skewer, twisting as you’re pulling it out.  May need to clean fork and skewer periodically.  Can add color to white truffle icing (use gel paste and not the liquid food colorings).  Melt the truffle icing first and then add the gel paste.  If cake gets soft after dipping for awhile, stick the cake back in the freezer for a few minutes.  Don’t want cake to crumble.  When petit four is set, take paring knife and trim off excess icing from bottom of “feet” of petit four.

Optional:  To decorate, use buttercream icing; keep it simple. Can use small paper cupcake holders to hold the petit four.  Can keep out at room temperature for a couple of days.  Need to refrigerate if longer, keeping in mind that chocolates will condensate in the refrigerator.

Note: If using a colored filling (ie, raspberry, strawberry), it will show through the white truffle icing.  Truffle icing, cake fillings and buttercream icings are available at Do It With Icing.