Dear SOS: Recently we were guests at Marriott's Grand Hotel at Point Clear in Alabama. We were served a delicious dessert that was their version of Mississippi Mud Pie, quite unlike any we had ever tasted. It had a frozen mousse-like filling. Please try to obtain the recipe.
Dear Mrs. E.C.W.: Executive chef Timothy M. Schaub sent us this recipe, which tested superbly in our test kitchen. It's a delightful summer dessert you can prepare ahead and freeze until needed.
MISSISSIPPI MUD PIE
14 cream-filled chocolate cookies
1/4 cup clarified butter
1/4 cup used coffee grounds
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup dessert whipped topping mix, chilled
1 1/2 tablespoons instant decaffeinated coffee powder
1 quart plus 3 cups chocolate ice cream, cooled to 14 to 16 degrees
1/4 cup coffee liqueur
1/2 cup chocolate fudge sauce
Place cookies, clarified butter and used coffee grounds into blender container and blend until thoroughly combined. Pour mixture into buttered 9-inch pie plate. Spread evenly with spatula. Place piece of plastic wrap over mixture, top with second pie pan and press firmly to distribute mixture, making certain bottom and sides are evenly covered. Remove second pan and plastic sheet and chill shell.
Blend whipped topping mix with coffee powder, stirring until completely dissolved.
Place chocolate ice cream in thoroughly chilled mixing bowl. Whip at medium speed with wire whip until smooth, from 2 to 10 minutes.
Immediately add whipped topping mixture and liqueur. Continue whipping on high speed until mixture thickens, from 2 to 10 minutes, depending on volume. Mound mixture into chilled pie shell. Immediately place in freezer and freeze 6 to 8 hours.
Quickly cover top of pie with chocolate fudge sauce and return to freezer to freeze completely. Run a thin bladed knife around edge of crust to loosen from pan. Cut and serve frozen. Makes 1 (9-inch) pie.
Note: It is important to chill bowl when whipping ice cream and handling preparations as quickly as possible to prevent melting. Prepare a day ahead for best results.
Dear SOS: I am looking for a nonfat salad dressing. Any chance?
Dear Sandi: There are many you can use, including these two versions of a creamy French and vinaigrette-style low-calorie/fat dressings.
1 (10 1/2-ounce) can condensed beef broth
2 tablespoons chili sauce
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 tablespoon grated onion
Combine broth, chili sauce, vinegar and onion. Shake well and serve over greens. Makes 1 1/4 cups, or about 10 servings.
1 tablespoon grated onion
1 tablespoon grated apple
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1/2 cup vinegar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon paprika
Dash garlic salt
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Combine onion, apple, soy sauce, vinegar, lemon juice, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic salt and red pepper flakes. Shake well and serve with green or vegetable salads. Makes about 1 cup.
Dear SOS: A few years back you printed a recipe for Rhubarb Chiffon Pie using oats, coconut, and strawberry gelatin. In moving I misplaced the recipe and would love to have it again, as I have a thriving rhubarb plant.
Dear Fern: You're in luck. I found the recipe, which goes back to 1976 with credit to Young Quinlan, a restaurant in Minneapolis.
RHUBARB CHIFFON CRUNCH PIE
1 cup oats
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/2 cup shredded coconut
2 1/2 cups cut rhubarb
3/4 cup sugar
1 (3-ounce) package strawberry gelatin
1 cup whipping cream, whipped
Place oats in shallow pan and bake at 375 degrees 5 to 6 minutes. Mix with brown sugar, butter and coconut. Pack firmly into bottom and sides of 9-inch pie plate. Chill until firm in freezer.
Combine rhubarb, 1/3 cup water and sugar in saucepan and simmer over low heat until tender, about 20 minutes. Cool. Dissolve gelatin in 1 cup boiling water, then add 1/4 cup cold water. Chill until partially set. Whip until fluffy. Fold in rhubarb and whipped cream. Chill until mixture holds shape. Swirl into pie shell and chill until firm. Makes 1 (9-inch) pie.
Dear SOS: This is a request not for a lost but rather an elusive recipe. I can't find a simple beef-barley soup in any of my recipe books and would appreciate a response from you.
Dear Margaret: Certainly. This recipe using flanken-style beef short ribs and dried mushrooms is one of our favorite recipes. The donor is Les Bresnik, an amateur cook in Los Angeles.
LES' MUSHROOM BARLEY SOUP
3 quarts water
2 cups dried Oriental mushrooms
1 1/2 to 2 pounds flanken-style beef short ribs
1 cup pearl barley
4 green onions, sliced
2 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons beef or chicken stock base
4 cups buttermilk
Combine water, mushrooms, and flanken-style short ribs in large kettle. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer 45 minutes.
Meanwhile, rinse and drain barley. Saute barley and green onions in oil until barley is lightly toasted. Add to soup and stir in stock base. Simmer 45 minutes longer, or until barley is tender.
Adjust seasonings, if needed. Gradually add buttermilk. Bring to boil, remove and slice flanken. Serve soup at once with flanken on side. Makes 8 servings.