Editor's note: Sugar Buzz columnist Hannah H. Carroll makes easy dessert recipes, serves them to co-workers and writes about the result.
It's here! Picnic/potluck/barbecue/shindig season has arrived. And I have an easy, crowd-pleasing dessert -- a longtime favorite -- for your next party.
I've been making (read: eating) this Double Chocolate Trifle since high school. My mom had it at a party, got the recipe and started making it for weekly meetings and potlucks. My brother and I were so frequently infuriated when she came home without any leftovers, Mom started setting aside a small portion for us when she made it. (She's a good mom like that.)
I've made this trifle countless times, mostly by request. It's easy and inexpensive to make, and it feeds a crowd. If taking this trifle to a party, use a large, portable bowl with a lid. Be sure to keep it refrigerated just before serving.
Preparation: Can you make brownies? Can you make pudding? That's all there is to it. Note the amount of milk used in the recipe is a cup less than called for on the pudding boxes. This creates a thicker consistency. I don't recommend using a food processor to crush the Heath bars; you want small chunks, not a fine powder.
Taste: The chewiness of the brownies, the creaminess of the pudding and the buttery flavor of the toffee make a satisfying, comforting combination. Whenever I serve this dessert, people rave about it. It's a classic and simple, and sometimes that's all we really want.
The bottom line: People love this dessert. Serve it at a party and you'll come home with an empty dish.
Hannah's rating: 5 stars
Hannah H. Carroll is the assistant features editor for The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette, and enjoys making desserts for her family and friends.
Double Chocolate Trifle
13-by-9-inch pan prepared brownies
2 small packages white chocolate JELL-O pudding mix
3 cups milk
1 (8-ounce) tub Cool Whip
3-4 Heath Toffee Bars
Cut brownies into squares.
Combine pudding mix and milk. Whisk until smooth and thick. Gently fold in Cool Whip.
Unwrap Heath bars and put them in a zip-top bag. Crush into small chunks with a mallet or hammer.
Place half the brownies in the bottom of a trifle bowl. Top with half the pudding mixture, then a little less than half the crushed Health bars. Repeat layers, ending with Heath bars on top.
Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Overall rating: 4.5 stars
Straight from the taster's mouth
"I'm a toffee junkie, and the toffee bits at the top made the perfect texture to complement the brownie and pudding filling." Andy Carpenter, copy editor/page designer, 5 stars
"I appreciate that it has both firm (the brownie and Heath Bar) and soft (the pudding and whipped cream) elements. I thought it would be mushy but it's not." Carol Weir, special sections editor, 4.5 stars
"If my husband ever leaves me, this is what I'd make to comfort myself. I would eat it all in one sitting and then start my new life in the morning. Part of me wishes he would just so I could do that." Liz Farrell, the Guide editor, 5 stars
"The big chunks of Heath and brownie make it taste something like a Dairy Queen Blizzard, except substitute pudding for ice cream." Kate Cerve, education reporter, 4 stars
The samplers: 16 employees of The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette
1 star = Ewww!
5 stars = Seconds, please!
Submit your recipe
Do you have an interesting dessert recipe for Hannah's next experiment? Send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Try it at home
Make this Double Chocolate Trifle and tell us what you think at islandpacket.com/blogalacarte.