Sunday, August 22, 2010
My Venture into Berries and Chocolate
Hello Blog Buddies! It's hot outside and nobody wants to heat up their kitchen by baking something. So, I decided to do a summertime dessert for today's posting.
I originally set out to make a Snickers Bar Salad. You know, the "salad" that contained chopped apples and Snickers? I think there are a lot of fruits that pair well with chocolate but an apple is not one of the first fruits that comes to my mind. So, I thought I would do my take on the "salad" and use strawberries and cream cheese. After much thought, I just could not bring myself to call this a SALAD. I'm a purist and that good, 'ol Snickers Bar Salad is nothing but a dessert to me. So, I thought I would dump it into a prepared pie crust and call it a pie instead.
When I was testing this recipe, I wondered:
1) Would the pie set up properly?
2) With all of the sugar in the filling, would the strawberries exude a lot of liquid – making the pie very weepy?
3) How much chunky stuff (the strawberries and Snickers) could the pie support? Too much and it would be too hard to cut and too little and guests would think I was being stingy with good stuff.
4) How large should I chop the chunky stuff. Small chunks are easier to eat but larger ones would have the texture contrast that I was looking for.
5) How chocolaty should the pie be?
To help resolve some of these questions, I made the pie and enlisted the help of co-workers, who are quite helpful in giving me input on recipes that I'm testing. Many of them felt I cut the Snickers too big so I cut them much smaller in the final recipe. One felt it would be tasty with strawberries and pineapple – and I very much agree. However, I would again be worried by how much juice the pineapple would give off since it's a particular juicy fruit. When I took it to work, I hadn't even named the pie. My good friend Sue offered "Snickerberry Pie" as a suggestion for the name and I loved it!
I was careful to use only the best strawberries in this recipe. Later, when I wanted to slice a strawberry for the garnish in the picture, I realized that I only had mammoth strawberries left. As you can in the picture, that stupid mammoth strawberry fills up half the photo! Oh, well. You get the idea. I'm not a sweets eater and I'm definitely not a chocolate lover but I think this pie tastes pretty darn good. On the plus side, it's a CINCH to make. When strawberries are in-season, it makes the pie even better. So, buy some fresh berries then chop down a Snickers tree and make this yummy dessert. Enjoy – and happy snickering!
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8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk, chilled
1/3 c lemon juice, chilled
1 8-oz tub whipped topping
3 full-size (or 12 fun-size) Snickers candy bars, cut into small cubes
1 1/2 c diced strawberries, chilled
1 prepared graham cracker or Oreo crust (preferably a larger one)
Hot Fudge Ice Cream Topping (Optional)
Sliced strawberries for garnish (Optional)
Additional Snickers for garnish (Optional)
In a mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth. Add the sweetened condensed milk and beat until well combined, scraping the bowl as needed. Add the lemon juice and mix. Add the whipped topping and mix until just combined. Using a large spoon, stir in the Snickers and strawberries until incorporated. Spoon into a prepared crust and refrigerate for at least 6 hours before serving. When ready to serve, cut into slices and, if desired, serve with hot fudge ice cream topping and additional sliced strawberries and chopped Snickers.
Posted by Cooking Ventures at 4:42 PM