The Country Cook: Pineapple Dream Dessert
                                                   

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Pineapple Dream Dessert

Summer is officially in full swing at my house. Kids got out of school last Thursday and I lost all of my hair by Saturday. I kid. I kid. Sorta. This is the time of year that working from home has some serious downfalls. On one hand, you want to be Super Mom and plan all these super cool, fun things for your kids so this will be the summer to remember. On the other hand, you HAVE to get work done. But when you don't go into an actual office, how do you do that? How do you be a fun Mom, still teach your kids through the summer and make sure they are actually practicing basic hygiene and eating decent food, keep the house straight, get all the chores done (grocery shopping, cooking, etc.) and still keep your sanity, manage a shower and earn a paycheck? I just can't figure out that balance yet without losing my mind. And my dishwasher broke yesterday and it's going to be two weeks before the warranty repair work can be done on it. Summer just started, y'all. I know - first world problems, right? But seriously, if you have any tips on how I can keep it together without totally falling apart mentally - I'd love to hear your tips. Because something has to give at some point, doesn't it? We can't possibly be all things to all people at all times and yet we don't want to alienate all those folks that we love and are more important to us than work and a clean house. 
So now, how do I segue from that barrel of laughs to talking about this recipe? Well, I can't really, so here it goes. Clearly I stink at small talk. To celebrate summer, I thought I'd share this old school recipe made with graham crackers, crushed pineapple, cream cheese and COOL WHIP. It was pretty popular in the 70's. It's simple to make but it's served chilled so it is refreshing and surprisingly does not taste heavy at all. This 8x8 dish can be cut into 12-15 pieces so it serves more than you would think. Do yourself a favor and bring back this favorite dessert and make it a 1970's summer to remember.
Ingredients:
Crust:
2 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup butter*

Filling:
4 oz. cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, room temperature*
2 cups powdered sugar
1 (8 oz.) container frozen whipped topping (COOL WHIP), thawed
1 (20 oz.) can crushed pineapple, drained well
*You can use salted or unsalted butter, whatever you have. Just make sure that it is butter and not margarine. 
 Directions:
Preheat oven to 300F. Crush your graham crackers. I just throw them in a Ziploc bag and pound the heck out of them. You can also just buy graham cracker crumbs too. Whatever works for you. I just happened to have these graham crackers for s'mores. 
Also, at this point, go ahead and get your pineapple drained. I just throw it in a strainer and let it drain while I get to work on everything else. 
 Melt 1/2 cup (1 stick butter) in the microwave using a medium, microwave-safe bowl. 
 Add 2 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs to the melted butter and stir until combined.
Measure out 2 CUPS of the crumb mixture and press it firmly into the bottom of an 8x8 or 9x9 square baking dish.  
It helps to use the bottom of a flat measuring cup or glass to press the mixture down. 
Bake crumb mixture for about 8-10 minutes and then allow to cool completely. 
 You'll have some crumb mixture left over. Just hang onto it because you'll need it for the topping. 
Measure 4 oz. softened cream cheese. Most cream cheese is sold in blocks of 8 ounces and have these handy dandy little markings on them to help you measure it out easily. 
 Beat the cream cheese and butter together until creamy. 
 It helps to use an electric mixer or a stand mixer for this.
If using a stand mixer, turn it down to low and add the powdered sugar slowly until it is all incorporated and smooth. 
 Try to resist dipping your fingers in this amazingness. Ok, go on, dip your finger in, I won't tell. 
 Now add in a big ole heaping tablespoon of the drained pineapple and give it a good stir. 
Next, spread the cream cheese mixture over the baked and cooled graham cracker crust. 
In a separate bowl, combine the whipped topping with the remaining drained crushed pineapple. 
Stir well. It will get thick and clumpy.
Spread whipped topping mixture over the cream cheese layer. I just drop it by the blob-full all over and then gently spread it using the back of my spoon. 
 Now, sprinkle the rest of the graham cracker crumb mixture on the top.
Cover with plastic wrap.  
Then refrigerate for at least 4 hours. This is a great dessert to make the night before you actually need to serve it. 
Enjoy!
PRINTABLE RECIPE HERE


Recipe adapted from Amanda's Cookin

18 comments :

  1. My mouth is watering. I love pineapple and this looks easy and refreshing.

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  2. OMG... it's early, I haven't even had coffee or b'fast yet but I want some of this NOW ! and how lucky am I to have everything in my pantry at this very moment..lol..
    Thanks for sharing this yummy recipe

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  3. Yay! I hope you love it! Once it's gotten cold in the fridge, it almost tastes like ice cream with a crunch!

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  4. Oh Brandie-you don't have to do it all. Think of the song "Summertime and the Living is easy". I am old now and my sons are long since grown. Never once have they said to -thanks mom for having the cleanest and shiniest kitchen floor, but they have said things like I loved it when you took us to the lake to fish and have a little picnic or I loved coming home from the park pool and smelling supper on the grill from a half block away. You can ask for help from your kids. I never expected mine to take over my duties, but to say things like "guys, if we get the garden cleaned up we could go to a movie after lunch or whatever needs done. Dangling a carrot is still a good method and leaves them happy. Just remember-you are right now creating memories for them and actually for yourself as well. The discipline of work leads to rewards and that is true in adult life and is important to learn in childhood.

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  5. Have the kiddos help you in the morning after they are fed and then reward them with a trip or picnic or any event. Does not have to be done every single day they are out of school. I am OCD and am not really one to talk about letting your chores go at home but as I aged I learned when things are said and done, those children get really big and leave home and you don't want to regret the short time you had with them. Then you can clean all you want; they really do not look at a spotless house as their priority....believe me. Always said my tombstone would say, "Here lies -------; she kept a clean house" lol When it is too late, you will wish you had planned and balanced out your time to include them the most; I am a great-grandmother and I see that now. Would give anything to have them all back under my wing... Sincerely hope this doesn't drive you crazy and you can find a balance with things. It will make your summer so much more enjoyable. Love your blog by the way....wonderful, wonderful recipes...get many fresh new ideas....

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  6. Thank you for the wonderful recipes. I do have a question. I teach English in Nicaragua and do not have canned pineapple or cool whip. I do have fresh pineapple and I have some dream whip paackages that I have shipped to Nicaragua. Do you think I can use these as a substitute for the crushed pineapple and cool whip? Thank you for your website.

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  7. Oh Brandie - don't doubt yourself girl...you are EXCELLENT at small talk! ;-} That's one big reason your fans love you so much...you're down to earth...everyday...plain and simple. You'll figure out how to balance your days...and I'm sure you'll keep first things first. It will be fun. This recipe looks awesome...my hubby doesn't care for canned pineapple, but I'm going to print it to make for a crowd somewhere else but home. Thanks for sharing your delicious and simple recipes that we all love so much.

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  8. I hope things settle down a bit for you! We need you to keep blogging and sharing these great recipes.

    Hey, is the consistency of the filling such that I could put it in a graham cx pie shell and skip the crumb topping? It holds up to the slicing? THX!

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  9. Hi Brandie,
    I had a similar situation working from home with kids. Awful. Made me all around cranky (putting it nicely). While it can be done for a day or two successfully, it is just not practical for an ongoing daily basis. My solution was summer day-camp at The Boys and Girls Club. If you have one in your area you should check it out. My kids absolutely love it, so many activities and field trips, they are disappointed to come home at the end of the day sometimes. That makes me happy because I know they are having way more fun than staying home with my trying-to-work-cranky self! The B & G Club is subsidized by grants and private donations, so weekly rates are very economical. Best of luck.

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  10. Anon. - That's great practical advice and thank you for listening and understanding! Sometimes it helps just to have someone who listens and gets it! Us Mommas can make ourselves feel guilty real quick, right?
    Linda - to answer your question - yes, I think you could definitely do that! It does set up thick enough that it slices up beautifully so I think that would totally work. Let me know if you try it! :)

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  11. To my other Anon. commenter with the grown kids - thank you for that! It helps to hear from an experienced Momma that we just can't do it all. I mean, there's a limit, right? And yes, I totally agree about the kiddos helping where they can! As much as I'd love to do more, I just can't without breaking myself too. Plus, we ned time for ourselves too to get centered again. Thank you for your sweet comment!

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  12. I have all of these ingredients laying around my house right now. I could easily make this. Thank you for your post. This is a great recipe. http://askmelissaanything.blogspot.com/

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  13. Thank you! I just to work with a woman that made this dessert and I loved it! I might have known how to make it once upon a time, but have forgotten. Occasionally I would think about it and wonder how to make it. I have pinned your recipe! Really....thanks!

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  14. The powder sugar I dont have can I use Icing sugar or is it the same thing










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  15. This reminds me of one of my very favorite recipes from the '60 called The Minot Cheesecake. It was delicious. You can still find the recipe for it plus more of their recipes just by googling "Minot recipes". Plus you can still buy Minot today. I think all it is really is a type of evaporated milk but you might want to buy some and try it's recipes.
    Good luck and thanks for reminding me about this very delicious recipe.

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  16. Growing up my mom used to make something similar to this using Alpha evaporated milk. She would whip the whole can of it and add sugar, lemon jello, and crushed pineapple, then it would set in the fridge overnight. Have never made this but I'm going to try it. Sounds good! What another commenter said about raising kids is true. Get them involved in chores and reward them and life will be way easier! No one will remember how clean your house was, how much money you had in the bank, or what car you drove. Your kids will remember things you did with and for them for sure.

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  17. I JUST FINISHED MAKING THIS DESSERT AND TOOK A TASTE BEFORE REFRIGERATING, IT IS DELICIOUS, I ADDED COCONUT TO EACH STEP EXCEPT THE CRUST, YUMMY. THANK YOU FOR SHARING, I AM TAKING IT TO A FATHERSDAY COOKOUT.

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    Replies
    1. Love the addition of coconut, hope it is the talk of the cookout! Enjoy

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