Recipes: Summer Sweets

Though summer comes to a close in September, there is still more than a month to soak in all of the wonderful tastes of the season, from berries to ballgame fare. Check out these two delectable dessert recipes from two of our favorite Valley restaurants that are a great way to celebrate the season’s eatings.

the boulders Strawberry Meringue I

Though it appears decadent, this pie recipe won’t pack on the pounds–at only 198 calories a slice:

Strawberry-Meringue Pie, courtesy of The Boulders Resort
Canola-oil cooking spray
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
4 cups sliced strawberries
1 cup plus 2 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
.5 envelope unflavored gelatin
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup egg whites
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
Heat oven to 375°F. Coat a 9″ pie plate with cooking spray; pour in crumbs; press to form an even layer. Bake 15 minutes. Mash 2 cups berries with 1 cup sugar and salt in a medium pan over medium heat. Bring to a boil; stir. Add gelatin; stir until dissolved. Remove from heat; add 1 tsp vanilla and remaining 2 cups berries. Mix egg whites and cream of tartar in a bowl; beat until soft peaks form. Add remaining 2 tbsp sugar and remaining 1/2 tsp vanilla; beat until stiff. Spoon berries onto piecrust; top with meringue. Bake 12 minutes. Cool; refrigerate at least 3 hours.

rico's Cracker Jack Sundae at Rico's Bar

Featuring homemade Cracker Jacks, this ice cream sundae just screams summer:

Cracker Jacks Sundae, courtesy of Rico’s American Grill
6 ounces of Cinnamon Twist Ice Cream
½ cup caramel
3 ounces whipped cream
6 ounces of Cracker Jacks (see recipe below)
2 ounces of peanuts
In a large pilsner glass start by layering popcorn, whip cream, ice cream, peanuts and caramel. Do each layer twice to make the sundae. Makes one serving.

Cracker Jacks
2 quarts dry popcorn
1 pound butter
1 cup and 4 ounces of water
3 cups sugar
2 tablespoons cinnamon
2 tablespoons ancho chili powder
Pop the popcorn. While popping the popcorn, start the caramel. Over medium heat, melt the butter. Add the sugar, water and cinnamon. Increase the heat and boil for 3-4 minutes. Add the ancho chili powder. Pour half the mixture over the popcorn and toss. Add remaining caramel and combine.

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