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Plump fresh strawberries should have a place of honor on the plate, and shortcake makes an inviting base on which to present them. Show off the bounty of berries in late spring and early summer—with a swirl of whipped cream on top for the crowning touch. —Jennifer Mastnick-Cook, Hartville, Ohio
"I first made this lovely lightly textured cake for my husband for Valentine's day more than 25 years ago," recalls Pat Eastman of Provo, Utah. "It's perfect for any special occasion. As an alternative, I've decorated the top with chocolate kisses."
"If you have patience and strong hands, ready for kneading, I suggest making the fondant yourself." Whether you use store bought or homemade, this artistic cake will get rave reviews.
Katie Molitor, Cedar, MN
I came across this recipe while preparing for a party and was thrilled with how easy it was to make. My guests were impressed that I could use a few simple ingredients to create such a stylish dessert.
Joan sometimes adds chocolate syrup to the basic batter to produce the lovely swirls in this moist marbled loaf. "For a sweet finish, top it with a can of prepared frosting...or use your favorite homemade frosting if time allows," she suggests.
Old Glory Angel Food makes a glorious dessert for your Fourth of July celebration. It's easy to assemble, but the triple layers and stars-and-stripes topping look like you fussed.
"One July, we invited a couple over for a backyard barbecue," relates Anne Nabbefeld of Hortonville, Wisconsin. "The woman had recently become a United States citizen, so I created this cake for her. It was a big hit."
Meet the Cook: The reason this is such a favorite is it's a little different yet quick and easy. At one time, my husband was a mess sergeant in the National Guard. When it came to cooking, there was always a little discussion over doing it my way or the Army way! We have four grown children and five grandchildren.
-Alyce Kafka, Wagner, South Dakota
Marscarpone cheese, fresh strawberries and a hint of lemon flavor this mouthwatering and impressive-looking dessert from Carrie Vazzano in Rolling Meadows, Illinois. An added bonus…the waxed-paper lined pan makes for speedy cleanup! CARRIE’S TIP. For health-conscious cooks or those counting calories, skimmed milk and reduced-fat cheese make easy, slimming substitutions.—Carrie Vazzano, Rolling Meadows, Illinois
The oldest of seven children, I did a lot of cooking and baking while I was growing up. Desserts like this refreshing rolled shortcake are my favorite. The nutty cake, creamy filling and fresh strawberries make pretty swirled slices.
"I recently made this moist chocolate cake for my sister and her husband," shares Jennifer Bangerter of Warrensburg, Missouri. "I've never seen cake disappear so quickly! It's great with or without the pretty strawberry sauce."