Thursday, February 12, 2009

You've Gotta Try this Recipe!!

My dear friend Jeanette is having a little boy (Bug says Yippee!) in about a month, and I had the honor of helping host a shower for her this past weekend. Aren't showers great fun? There's so much joyful anticipation floating around...not to mention FOOD.

Did you ever see the Simpson's episode that's set in the future? No?! You don't watch that silly garbage? Well, let me enlighten you: the Simpson's futuristic house robot (with the voice of Pierce Brosnan... can I get one of those, please?) prepares everyone's favorite dinner every night. Marge has filet mignon, I think, and Bart has a hamburger and fries... and Homer has a plate of "various eggs." A lump of scrambled eggs, a little hard-boiled one, a fried one. Hilarious. Well, my Brosnan robot would definitely make me a plate of tiny shower foods: little sandwiches with no crust, petit fours and at least three items whose main ingredient is cream cheese.

Speaking of cream cheese, here's one of my favorite shower recipes. I get more requests to share this recipe than any other. The best part? It's super simple and can be made a day or two ahead of time.

2 8-oz pkgs. cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 6-oz pkg. dried cranberries
1 1/2 cups chopped pecans, divided

In mixer, blend cream cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla until smooth.
Fold in cranberries.
Dump half of pecans into a round bowl with high sides. Dump cream cheese mixture into bowl, on top of pecans. Mold into a ball-like shape (it will be messy). Sprinkle and press remaining pecans on top and sides of ball. It's okay if it's a mess; you can reform it better after it firms up in the fridge for a few hours.
Refrigerate until firm (or overnight). Form into a more presentable ball.
Serve with gingersnaps, butter crackers or graham crackers.

You can substitute low-fat cream cheese, but the original version is worth every calorie, I promise! (Homer would definitely agree).

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