Inexpensive Dessert Ideas
Posted: 31 July 2008 02:12 PM   [ Ignore ]
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  7
Joined  2008-06-02

Hi Everyone, I am looking for some inexpensive dessert ideas. I make desserts for my sons teacherl luncheon to feed about 60-70. But this time I am on a strict budget so I need to find some good ideas but i’d love the desserts to still be special. Does anyone have any good ideas for some desserts? I know its crazy but I only want to spend $50-$60 max (you can laugh now!). I’m thinking about maybe a special cheesecake or flourless type of chocolate cake (fills up easy and is rich) and some other gourmet style dessert or pie. Any help would be appreciated. In the past i’d always do a big cake (from scratch) and one or two desserts. I figure w/ my budget that two items will be sufficient. They are eating lunch, this is casual and dessert is kind of optional. Keep in mind, i’ve got tons of flour, sugar & vanilla so these would not have to come out of my budget, also I have a Sam’s club membership. Eggs are inexpensive and whipping cream is $5.00/qt. Thanks for your time. p.s.-Skill wise, I can bake most everything, meringue, baked custards, cakes, egg based desserts, etc. smile

Profile
 
 
Posted: 31 July 2008 02:31 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  601
Joined  2007-11-27

Yikes!  Whipping cream is at $5/qt where you are?!  Here in the greater Boston area, it is about $3/qt retail at the grocery store or wholesale club.

Cookies and brownies are easy and casual enough for a teacher’s luncheon where people might be coming and going at different times based on their class schedule, plus if the teachers prefer they can wrap one in a napkin and take it for later.  The brownie recipe in Rose’s Christmas cookie book are excellent, and one of my go-to recipes.  (I have several favorite brownie recipes, including more than a few from Maida Heatter.  Her chocolate cream cheese brownies are to die for, as well as her adaptation of Katherine Hepburn’s brownies.  Both recipes are in the Great American Desserts book)

You could have an arrangement of different types of cookies, bars and brownies and they will still look good as people take things away from the display.

 Signature 

I Dream of Jeanne Cakes selected by Brides Magazine as one of their 100 Favorite Bakers (2013)

Profile
 
 
Posted: 31 July 2008 02:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  7
Joined  2008-06-02

Thanks so much for your reply. We’re in Florida and our prices are crazy!! I think i’ll try to look up the brownies they sound great. My only problem (self inflicted) is the group is used to desserts, i am usually the only one who provides desserts, usually gourmet style so they are expecting desserts. They stay the whole time and wait for when I start serving the desserts so i’m afraid cookies (though usually great) would probably be too casual for this since they are used to rich desserts. Its my fault, for spoiling them to begin with, since they are used to 2-3 desserts, but my budget is dicatating my actions now and I want to slowly decrease how much I spend but still want to provide some nice desserts. Thanks for your advice though, i’ve never made any of Rose’s brownies only cakes, and I think they would definitely something I could work with.  Thanks again and have a great afternoon!

Profile
 
 
Posted: 31 July 2008 03:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2578
Joined  2007-11-15

Ouch… $5 per quart of heavy cream????? Man… I’m near Washington DC and I only pay $3. 

Anyway, I say make it easy on yourself and make a lot of one thing instead of lots of different things.  I love the cheesecake idea - they might cost you $10 a piece, but each 10” cake can serve 14-16 people - you can add variety by offering different toppings such as blueberry, strawberry, cherry, etc. 

Dressed up brownies are nice too - I love to serve them covered in a layer of ganache (can’t tell you how many times someone has said, “these are the best brownies I have ever eaten”).  Have you tried Rose’s brownie puddle?  Here’s a link to the recipe: http://www.jewishfood-list.com/recipes/cookie/brownie/browniepuddle01.html

 Signature 

Come visit me at

Blog:  http://butteryum.org
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ButterYum
Pinterest:  http://www.pinterest.com/butteryum/
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ButterYum.ATastyLittleFoodBlog

Profile
 
 
Posted: 31 July 2008 05:46 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  253
Joined  2007-11-29

i know we all love scratch made, but ghirardhelli makes an excellent double choc brownie mix that is available in bulk from costco. i think it has 6 packets of mix (1 pan of brownies each) for around $7.  they are delicious and decadent.

 Signature 

http://www.ellavanilla.com

Profile
 
 
Posted: 01 August 2008 12:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
Member
Avatar
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  64
Joined  2008-05-19

Cupcakes are all the rage.  Does that qualify as a “dessert”?  Once again, they provide the portability that teachers always need; dispense with the need for serving utensils; and you know how many portions you have.  You could even make cheesecake cupcakes.

I like the idea of the cookie platter. But that’s kind of my niche around here.  I have done baskets of decorated (see my avatar to left) or just yummy cookies for the teacher appreciation week at my sons’ school.  But it is just one offering of many.  Most cookies can be prepared in advance, so the work is spread out over a few days or a week. 

You could do tartlets. 

I’ve done miniature black-bottom banana cream pie things in the foil cupcake liners. 

Single serving mousses in little cups with a cookie on the side.  Mousse piped into a small dish with a star tip would be elegant and rich, but relatively light.  I did little “mousse shots” in the plastic oyster cups for a party.

I haven’t done anything except the mousse shots for a large crowd. They were served alongside other sweets at a Christmas party.  But if I was faced with your task, these are some of the ideas I would entertain.

Good luck,

JennyBee

Profile
 
 
Posted: 01 August 2008 12:30 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
Newbie
Rank
Total Posts:  7
Joined  2008-06-02

Hi, I just wanted to say thank you to everyone for your advice and help. I’m definitely going to be trying rose’s brownie recipe and I think I need to pick up Rose’s pie and pastry bible I only have her cake book and it sounds like there are alot of good recipes in that book. I appreciate everyone’s input. Thanks again. 

Brigitte

Profile
 
 
Posted: 01 August 2008 11:56 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2578
Joined  2007-11-15

Speaking of mousse shots, have you guys heard about how some bakeries are offering “buttercream shots”?  It’s the craziest thing I’ve ever heard of, but I guess it’s becoming very popular.

 Signature 

Come visit me at

Blog:  http://butteryum.org
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ButterYum
Pinterest:  http://www.pinterest.com/butteryum/
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ButterYum.ATastyLittleFoodBlog

Profile
 
 
Posted: 01 August 2008 04:26 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  253
Joined  2007-11-29

LOL buttercream shots?? I suppose if it’s mousseline or the like then it will be delicious, but without the cake, what’s the point?

it’s soo funny to me because by the end of an evening of baking I can barely taste anything and have to rely on family to tell me if i have the flavor just right!

whenever i attend a party where i’ve made the cake i always head back to the buffet while everyone else is having dessert!

jen

 Signature 

http://www.ellavanilla.com

Profile
 
 
Posted: 01 August 2008 05:48 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2578
Joined  2007-11-15

I know…. it’s so weird.  Here’s a link to the article:
http://www.twincities.com/ci_9970069?source=most_emailed

 Signature 

Come visit me at

Blog:  http://butteryum.org
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ButterYum
Pinterest:  http://www.pinterest.com/butteryum/
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ButterYum.ATastyLittleFoodBlog

Profile
 
 
Posted: 01 August 2008 07:59 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  1429
Joined  2007-11-18

I can’t imagine eating buttercream on its own without any cake…...

 Signature 

http://heavenlycakesenjoyedonearth.blogspot.com/

Profile
 
 
Posted: 01 August 2008 09:57 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
Member
Avatar
RankRankRank
Total Posts:  64
Joined  2008-05-19

Hey, maybe we can charge customers to lick the beaters and bowls next.

Come on, folks.  Isn’t eating icing straight-up something that should be done over the sink in the privacy of your own kitchen?

What is the world coming to?  rolleyes

JennyBee

Profile
 
 
Posted: 01 August 2008 11:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  2578
Joined  2007-11-15
JennyBee - 02 August 2008 12:57 AM

Isn’t eating icing straight-up something that should be done over the sink in the privacy of your own kitchen?

LOL
cool smile  cool smile  cool smile  cool smile  cool smile

 Signature 

Come visit me at

Blog:  http://butteryum.org
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/ButterYum
Pinterest:  http://www.pinterest.com/butteryum/
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/ButterYum.ATastyLittleFoodBlog

Profile
 
 
Posted: 02 August 2008 12:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
Sr. Member
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  500
Joined  2007-11-24

As more of a pastry baker, I thought of turnovers or small “hand pies.” Or a variety of galettes? You can fill them with all sorts of things and they are easy to make and serve.

 Signature 

Please visit my blog:
Bungalow Barbara

Profile
 
 
Posted: 13 October 2008 10:11 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
Administrator
Avatar
RankRankRankRank
Total Posts:  4797
Joined  2008-04-16

I also love the cupcake idea, because it is portable and serving size is controlled.  You could do little chocolate oblivion tortes, or cheesecakes, or brownies, or carrot cakes (carrots are pretty inexpensive!).  Then decorate them attractively to up the sophistication factor. 

You could also vary toppings.  I made up a batch of All-American chocolate butter cake cupcakes, and a large batch of caramel silk meringue buttercream.  Then I divided up the buttercream and made several variations on the theme:  burnt orange, coffee-caramel, caramel, and chocolate-caramel.  The buttercream was piped in a nice swirl, and tops were garnished according to flavor, with candied orange peel, coffee beans, and chocolate shavings.

Good luck!

 Signature 

Brød & Taylor Test Kitchen:  Greek-style yogurt recipe

Profile
 
 
   
  Back to top