Saturday, September 11, 2010

Easy Chilled Desserts: Banana-Caramel Pie with Toasted Pecans and Fresh Strawberry Cake

This banana pie is fabulous, and you might as well make two at a time and share with someone else since it is just as easy to make two. Everyone at mine and Al's work loved it. The strawberry cake is really easy and reminds me of one my grandma used to make with coconut (pina coloda cake).

Banana-Caramel Pie with Toasted Pecans

2 pkg (8 oz)  cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tub (8 oz) cool whip, divided
1/2 cup caramel ice cream topping, divided
1 graham cracker pie crust (get the 2 extra servings crust if you can find it, there is plenty of filling for it)
1/2 cup pecan pieces, toasted
2 bananas, sliced

Beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla in a large bowl with mixer until blended. Stir in 2 cups cool whip with a whisk; set aside. Spread 1/4 cup caramel topping onto bottom of crust, then top with a layer of bananas, 1/4 cup of pecans, then the cream cheese mixture. Cover with remaining cool whip and pecans. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, then drizzle with remaining caramel topping just before serving.

Fresh Strawberry Cake

1 box white cake mix
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 packages strawberries, finely diced (equals about 4 cups) and combined with 1/4 cup sugar
1 container of cool whip

Prepare cake according to package directions in a 9x13 inch dish. Poke holes in hot cake all over (can use the handle of a wooden spoon), then pour condensed milk evenly over the top of the cake. Allow to cool completely (milk will soak into the cake). Spread strawberry mixture evenly over the cake, then top with cool whip. Chill in the refrigerator overnight or at least 3 hours before serving.

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