Any dessert that involves rum and key lime is sure to be the star of the party. But what about one topped with sugared key limes and cranberries and a delectable buttercream frosting? Place a sweet treat that stunning—and tasty—on the dessert table, and it might just take the cake.
For a pretty presentation, top the tart with sugared cranberries: Steep whole berries in simple syrup in the refrigerator 8 hours, then roll in sugar and let stand 1 hour to dry.
Microwaving the chocolate helps keep the temperature below 92°, ideal for tempering. Use the best-quality white chocolate you can find (not those labeled "baking chips").
For a pretty presentation, prepare a second recipe of the piecrust and cut out shapes with a small cookie cutter. Attach them to the edge of the crust with egg wash, and then bake and fill as directed.
- Recipe: Browned Butter Chess Pie
Pumpkin desserts don’t just belong in a pie shell. Try puff pastry sheets layered with the key ingredient—pumpkin butter. It’s the perfect finish to a holiday meal.
Recipe: Pumpkin Cream Cheese Napoleons
Prepare these bite-size delights a few days in advance so that the bold bourbon flavor has time to mellow. With hints of vanilla and pecan, all rolled in powdered sugar, these are just right for a cocktail party.
Recipe: Bourbon Balls
Impress your dinner guests with minimal effort. This simple pie includes toasted coconut, a buttermilk batter, and dots of semisweet chocolate morsels—all in a premade crust.
Recipe: Coconut Buttermilk Pie
Instead of layering the honey and nut mixture between buttery layers of phyllo dough as you would do when making traditional baklava, here you spoon the mixture into mini phyllo tart shells. This is a great recipe for entertaining because your guests can pick these up with their fingers and not worry about making a mess.
Recipe: Baklava Tartlets
Benne (an African word for sesame) seed cookies are a traditional Gullah recipe. The creamy chocolate mousse–like dessert makes a good contrast with these crispy treats. For a twist, we added coconut and almonds to give the cookie a sweeter flavor and extra texture.
These fudgy treats—which you can make ahead and freeze in an airtight container, unsliced, for up to three weeks—are an ideal addition to a cocktail party menu.
This delicious spin on sweet potato pie packs plenty of holiday flavor thanks to cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and ginger. It can be made ahead to suit your holiday schedule.
When I inherited my mother's wooden recipe box, inside were recipes in the handwriting of my mother, my grandmother, and my great-grandmother. My great-grandmother's soufflé was so simple, but it's just what you want at the end of a big meal: a light, lemony froth. Drizzling it with raspberry sauce enhances it, if that is possible.