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Fruit Desserts

Updated on January 3, 2022

Fruits are part of a healthy diet

FRUIT, as is generally understood, is the fleshy, juicy product of some plant or tree which, when ripe, is suitable for use as food. Although some fruits are seedless, they generally contain the seeds of the plants or trees that produce them. Many fruits require cooking to make them palatable, others are never cooked, and still others may be cooked or eaten raw, as desired.

Fruits, because they are wholesome, appetizing, and attractive, occupy a valuable place in the diet. In fact, it is these qualities rather than their food value that accounts for the popularity of fruitsamong all people.

In addition to causing fruits to appeal to the esthetic sense, their attractiveness serves another important purpose. It is said that Nature made them attractive in color, odor, and flavor in order that birds might be allured to attack them for food and, by spreading the seeds, assist in their propagation.

2. Fruits are gradually growing to be less seasonal and more a daily food, and are thus constantly becoming more prevalent in the diet. This condition may be attributed to the present rapid means of transportation and the excellent methods of cold storage that exist.

Through these agencies it is possible to ship more or less perishable fruits long distances from their native localities and at times of the year other than the particular season in which they are at their best in the places where they are grown.

Thus, fruits that were formerly considered a luxury may now be served regularly, even on the tables of persons having only moderate means.

The fact that fruits are being more extensively used every day is as it should be, for this food is entitled to an important place in the diet of all persons. So important is fruit in the diet that it must be looked on not as one of the things that may be taken or omitted as a person wishes without making any difference either way, but as a food to include in one form or another in nearly every meal.

The child who is so young that it cannot take any solid food may have fruit juices included in its diet to decided advantage; but children who are slightly older and adults may take the fruits cooked or raw instead of in the form of juices.

3. As far as the composition of fruits is concerned, it is such that most fresh fruits are notparticularly high in food value. However, they are characterized by other qualities that make up for what they lack in this respect; then, too, what they contain in the way of heat-producing or tissue-building material is easily digestible.

Most fruits contain considerable acid, and this food substance makes them stimulating to the appetite.

Advantage of this fact is taken when fruits are served at the beginning of a breakfast or when severalof them are combined in a fruit cocktail and served before luncheon or dinner.

This acid produces real stimulation in the stomach, resulting in a flow of gastric juice from the glands of the stomach walls. In addition, the delightful color, the fragrant odor, or the pleasant taste of fruit, although a mental effect, is just as real and just as valuable as the actual stimulation of the acids.

4. Many fruits are eaten raw, while others are cooked either because they require cooking to make

them appetizing or because it is desired not to use them in their raw state. The cooking of fruits has a variety of effects on them, being sometimes advantageous and other times detrimental.

The flavor is always changed by the application of heat, and in some cases the acid that fruit contains becomes stronger. On the other hand, the fibrous material, or cellulose, of fruits is softened by cooking and thus becomes more digestible.

Then, too, the sugar that is usually added to fruits in their cooking increases their food value. Because of these facts, cooked fruits have considerable value and, like raw fruits, should have an important

place in the diet. Those fruits which are dried and usually eaten raw, such as figs and dates, supply much nourishment in an easily digestible form.

5. The medicinal value of fruit has long been considered to be of importance, but this may be almost entirely disregarded, for, with the exception of the fact that most fruits are valuable as a laxative,

there is nothing to consider. However, several fruits, such as blackberries and bananas, have an anti-laxative effect, and large quantities of these should for the most part be avoided, especially in the feeding of children.

6. In general, fruits are divided into two classes, namely, food fruits and flavor fruits. As their names imply, food fruits are valuable as food, whereas flavor fruits are those distinguished by a characteristic flavor. It should be remembered that the flavors, as well as the odors, of fruits, are due chiefly to what is known as their volatile, or ethereal, oils. Fruits in which these oils are very strong are often irritating to certain persons and cause distress of some sort after eating.

Blackberry Sponge

BLACKBERRY SPONGE.--One of the few desserts made from fresh blackberries is explained in the accompanying recipe and known as blackberry sponge. This is very delicious, for the berries are combined with cake and the combination then served with whipped cream.


(Sufficient to Serve Six)

1 qt. blackberries

3/4 c. sugar

1 c. water

4 pieces plain loaf or sponge cake

Whipped cream

Heat half of the berries with the sugar and the water until they are mushy. Then force the whole through a sieve. Cut the cake into cubes and put them into a bowl. Pour the juice and the blackberry pulp on the cake.

Press the mixture down with a spoon until it is quite solid and set in the refrigerator or some other cold place to cool. Turn out of the bowl on a large plate, garnish with the remaining berries, heap with the whipped cream, and serve.

Pressed Blueberry Pudding


(Sufficient to Serve Eight)

1 qt. blueberries

1 c. water

1/2 c. sugar

8 slices bread

Whipped cream

Put the blueberries, water, and sugar into a saucepan and boil for a few minutes. Put four of the slices of bread, which should be cut about 1/2 inch thick, in the bottom of a square pan. Pour one-half of the blueberries and the juice over the bread, and put the four remaining slices of bread on top of the berries.

Pour the rest of the blueberries and juice over the bread. Place another square pan over the top and weigh it down so as to press the pudding. Then set the pudding in the refrigerator until it is cool.

Cut into squares, remove from the pan, and serve with sweetened whipped cream.

Fruit Crisp

This recipe makes 12 servings

10-Minute Fruit Crisp

5 cups chopped apples, peaches, nectarines, or strawberries

1 (18.25-ounce) package white, yellow, or vanilla cake mix

1/2 cup melted butter

3/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

1. Preheat oven to 350*F (175*C).

2. Spread fruit in 13 x 9 x 2-inch pan. Sprinkle dry cake mix over and drizzle butter over all. Sprinkle nuts on top and bake for 30 minutes or until fruit is tender and top is lightly browned.

Cherry Pie

Cherry Pie is my favorite

Cherry Pie Pastry:

2 2/3 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup Crisco vegetable shortening, plain or butter-flavored*

1 teaspoon kosher or coarse salt

6 tablespoons ice water Filling:

1 1/3 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

3 (16-ounce) cans red tart cherries, undrained

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

2 tablespoons butter

1 teaspoon sugar

1. Mix flour and salt in mixing bowl. Cut shortening into the flour with a pastry cutter, until mixture resembles the texture of tiny split peas.

2. When mixture is the right texture, add the ice water and combine with a fork. It may appear as if it needs more water, it does not. Gather the dough into a ball.

3. Divide dough into two balls and flatten each into 4-inch-wide disk. Wrap each in plastic, and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

4. Remove one piece of dough from refrigerator. If stiff and very cold, let stand until dough is cool but malleable.

5. Roll one dough disk on a lightly floured surface into a 12-inch circle. fold dough in quarters, then place dough point in center of pie pan and unfold dough

6. Gently press dough into sides of pan, leaving portion that overhangs edge of pie pan in place. Refrigerate while preparing cherry filling.

7. Adjust oven rack to center position and heat oven to 425*F (220*C).

8. For Filling: Mix sugar and flour in large mixing bowl. Stir in cherries, and extract). Pour into the pastry-lined pie plate and dot with butter.

9. Roll out remaining dough disk and place over filling; seal and flute the edges. Make several slits in top crust to vent the steam. Sprinkle with the 1 teaspoon sugar.

10. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes or until crust is brown and juice begins to bubble through slits in crust.

11. cool to room temperature.

Makes 8 servings.

Pumpkin Bars

Crust Ingredients:

1 (18.25-ounce) package spice or carrot cake mix

1/2 cup Butter, melted*

1 large egg

Filling Ingredients:

2/3 cup milk

1 can pumpkin pie filling

2 large eggs

Topping Ingredients:

1 cup reserved cake mix

1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar

1/4 cup Butter, softened

1/2 cup chopped pecans

Garnish Ingredients:

Whipped cream

1. Heat oven to 350°F.

2. Reserve 1 cup cake mix for topping; set aside.

3. Combine remaining cake mix, butter and 1 egg in large mixer bowl. Beat at low speed until well mixed (1 to 2 minutes). Spread in bottom of greased 13 x 9-inch baking pan. Set aside.

4. Combine all filling ingredients in same bowl. Beat at low speed until smooth (1 to 2 minutes); pour filling over crust.

5. Combine all topping ingredients except pecans in medium bowl; stir until crumbly. Stir in pecans. Sprinkle topping over filling.

6. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 15 minutes. Serve warm or cool with whipped cream. Cover; store refrigerated.

Makes 15 servings.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2007 Mike Bouska


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