Tirami-Moo


A kids’ version of the Italian dessert tiramisu. The cookies are dipped into milk, not coffee, to soften. No baking is required, but you do need to chill this dish for several hours.
Supplies
dinner knife; bowls; measuring cups; wooden spoon; whisk; measuring spoons; baking spatula; 9- × 5-inch (23 × 12) glass, ceramic, or metal loaf pan; shallow dish; sifter
Ingredients
½ cup (125 mL) cream cheese (half of a ½ lb/250 g package)
¼ cup (60 mL) white sugar
½ cup (125 mL) milk
¼ tsp (1 mL) vanilla extract
½ cup (125 mL) milk
¼ cup (60 mL) instant vanilla pudding powder (not the kind that needs cooking)
1 cup plain or chocolate milk
12 to 14 savoiardi biscuits (crisp ladyfinger cookies)
2/3 cup (160 mL) whipped cream or topping (this is already whipped)
½ tsp (2 mL) unsweetened cocoa powder
  1. Use a dinner knife to cut the block of cream cheese into eight or nine big pieces. Put them in a large microwave-safe bowl and heat in the microwave at 50% power to soften (about 1 minute). Use the back of a wooden spoon to cream in the sugar.
  2. Stir ½ cup (125 mL) milk into the cream cheese mixture. Just roughly mix it in; it will not blend in completely yet. Put the bowl back in the microwave and heat again at 50% power for 1 minute. Switch to a whisk and mix smooth. Whisk in the vanilla extract, another ½ cup (125 mL) milk, and the instant pudding mix. Mix smooth. This is the vanilla custard.
  3. Use a baking spatula or wooden spoon to spread about half the custard evenly in the bottom of the loaf pan.
  4. Put the cup of milk into a shallow dish. Roll one savoiardi biscuit at a time into the milk. It will soften right away, so you should work pretty quickly so the cookies don’t get too soft to hold. Lay the dipped biscuits touching side by side on the custard in the loaf pan. Gently press them into the custard. Try not to leave gaps between the biscuits. It’s okay to break some cookies into pieces to fill in spaces. Use about half the biscuits in this layer.
  5. Spread the rest of the custard on top of the row of cookies. Dip the rest of the biscuits—one at a time—in the milk and place them in another row on the top layer of custard.
  6. Use a clean baking spatula to spread the whipped cream or topping evenly overtop.
  7. Put the cocoa powder into the sifter. Hold it about 5 inches (12 cm) over the loaf pan and tap the edge of the sifter to sprinkle cocoa powder evenly on top. Chill for at least 3 hours or overnight. Slice to serve. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator.
Serves 8.
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Cheesecake Mousse and Cookie Parfaits



Individual no-bake, chilled desserts that taste like fluffy cheesecake with fresh fruit.
Supplies
dinner knife, bowls, measuring cups, wooden spoon, measuring spoons, drinking cup, ordinary teaspoon, baking spatula, whisk, 6 small glasses (about ¾ cup/185 mL each)
Ingredients
½ cup (125 mL) cream cheese (half of a ½ lb/250 g package)
1/3 cup (80 mL) + 1 Tbsp (15 mL) white sugar
3 Tbsp (45 mL) warm tap water
2 tsp (10 mL) unflavored gelatin powder
½ cup (125 mL) vanilla yogurt (or ½ cup/125 mL plain yogurt plus ¼ tsp/1 mL vanilla extract)
1 cup (250 mL) whipped cream or topping (this is already whipped)
1 cup (250 mL) fresh blueberries
18 vanilla wafer cookies (small round cookies, 1½ inches/4 cm wide)
  1. Use a dinner knife to cut the cream cheese into eight or nine pieces. Put them into a large microwave-safe bowl and heat in the microwave at 50% power to soften (about 1 minute). Use the back of a wooden spoon to cream in the sugar. Set aside.
  2. Measure the warm tap water into a drinking cup. Add the gelatin powder and stir with an ordinary teaspoon. Pour the gelatin and water into the cream cheese mixture. Use a baking spatula to scrape all the bits of gelatin clinging to the glass into the cream cheese mixture. Use a whisk to stir smooth.
  3. Still using the whisk, stir the vanilla yogurt (or plain yogurt and vanilla extract) into the cream cheese mixture until smooth.
  4. Use a baking spatula to fold the whipped cream or topping into the cream cheese mixture. Folding means to gently mix ingredients without squishing out the air. Add the whipped cream or topping onto the cream cheese mixture in the bowl. Slice the blade of the baking spatula around the whipped cream and under the cream cheese mixture, going in big circles down to the bottom of the bowl and back up again, until the ingredients are blended but still fluffy. This is the cheesecake mousse.
  5. Using a clean ordinary teaspoon, drop a heaping spoonful of the mousse into each glass. Top each glass with four or five blueberries, a cookie, followed by another spoonful of mousse, then another four or five blueberries. Use up all the mousse.
  6. Finish by sticking two vanilla wafer cookies on top of each glass of mousse. To do this, hold the cookies as if you are dropping coins into a piggy bank and stick them into the mousse until they are halfway hidden. Chill the cups for at least two hours or overnight before eating. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator.
Makes 6 Cheesecake Mousse and Cookie Parfaits.
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