I’ve always tried to be one of those friends. If I’m at Starbucks and I know you like Frappuccinos, I’ll bring you one. If I spy your favorite snack at the store, I’ll grab a few. New baby? A week later, I’ll bring dinner by. No new baby? I’ll bring dinner over just because. I try. This past week, I’ve been on the receiving end of those friends. Seriously, I have the best friends and most supportive family ever. Friends and family gave up their lunch hours to help me pack. My sister and brother-in-law brought over lunch on moving day. Last week a friend took the kids for a few hours so I could pack. Last night, a friend came over and, in one hour, blazed through relocating so many boxes from the dining room that I can actually see the dining room table (there’s hope!). Tonight, a friend took the kids so I could unpack some more. I’m very lucky. Very lucky indeed.
Last week, when I dropped the kids off at a friend’s, it was on the condition that I bring dinner as well. If she’s going to watch six kids seven and under, it’s the least I could do! And ‘sides, it actually helped me out too, as I was able to empty some more items from the fridge and freezer while making dinner. I made a new recipe for the main meal, but for dessert I stuck with a tried-and-true. I originally got the recipe for Cherries in the Snow from a family friend many, many years ago. She doesn’t really cook or bake, so that tells you how crazy simple it is to make. But what’s more is that it’s pretty and usually gets oohs and aahs from the kids. Perfect for the crowd that night.
If you google it, there are seemingly countless versions of Cherries in the Snow … some with graham cracker crumbs on the bottom, some the same recipe I use but shorter layers put in a long glass baking dish, some light, some not so light. The recipe has been around for a good 50 years, with, it seems, a slightly different interpretation with each person that makes it. The version below is the one that I have been making for years. I like putting it in a glass trifle dish so you can better see all the pretty layers. It feels like a heavy dessert, but tastes great with light or reduced fat ingredients, so you can dig in and leave the guilt behind. That’s totally my kind of dessert.
Cherries in the Snow
1 (8-ounce) tub fat-free cream cheese
1 cup sifted powdered sugar
1 (12-ounce) carton frozen reduced-calorie whipped topping, thawed
8 cups (1-inch) cubed angel food cake
1 (20-ounce) can light cherry pie filling
Beat cream cheese at medium speed of a mixer until smooth. Gradually add the sugar, beating until blended. Gently fold in whipped topping.Place half of cake cubes in a large glass bowl; top with half of cheese mixture. Spread half of cherry filling over cheese mixture. Repeat layers with remaining cake cubes, cheese mixture, and cherry filling. Cover and chill.