Because I like this wonderful ladies recipes so much, I'm going to try and start showcasing them here on the blog. This delightful and scrumpious dessert is called simply, Layered Cherry Dessert, but there is nothing simple about it....it is too die for! Or, so my better half and I think....
The recipe was created by the wonderful and talented JoAnna Lund and the world is lacking because she has left this world to create in heaven. I'm so glad that I found her books back in 1998. Bill had a staff infection in his foot and his dietitian told him he needed to start watching what he eats better. So....I did some research and found the first cookbook, The Diabetic's Healthy Exchanges Cookbook...since then I've added quite a few more of her books and I signed up for her monthly newsletters. Those newletters are usually where I turn to first to find something for supper and I never, never fix supper without adding a dessert to the menu. I can watch what I eat as long as it includes some sweet for my obsessive sweet tooth and she (JoAnna) was just like me. Did we stay on this new way of eating? Nope....we did good for about 6 months, Bill lost 15 pounds and I lost 9 but work and hectic schedules got in the way of planning meals and before we knew it we were back to eating junk and fast food. It wasn't that we didn't like the food, it just seemed to take me longer to plan our menus and my life was just too hurried. But...I realize now that the key to weight loss IS planning your meals. Without the plan, you fall off the tracks and then you are right back where you started. I try and plan my weekly menu on Sunday mornings. We are pretty good at eating leftovers so I can plan three meals and they will last us through the week. Most of the desserts make 8 to 12 portions so one dessert will usually get us through. Another thing I have found that is super important is keeping track of everything you eat during the day. I signed up for Calorie King and it keeps me on track. I can add my Joanna Lund recipes right to the tracker and then add them to my daily calorie count. It keeps track of my exercise and my weight loss in pounds and inches. I really like it!
Ok...I've really rambled off the subject here so here is the recipe. If I'd had some gumption I would have made this into a pretty recipe card like you do but as you can see....I didn't! LOL
Layered Cherry Dessert
1 3/4 cups purchased graham cracker crumbs * (or do as I did and crush your own)1/2 cup Splenda Granular
1/4 cup I Can't Believe It's Not Butter Light Margarine, melted
2 (20-ounce) cans Lucky Leaf No Sugar Added Cherry Pie Filling (I can't get this in our area so I used Wilderness No Sugar Added)
1 (8-ounce) pkg Philadelphia fat-free cream cheese
2 1/2 cups Cool Whip Free
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup miniature marshmallows
Preheat oven to 375°. In a large bowl, combine 1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs, Splenda, and melted margarine. Pat mixture evenly into a 9x13 inch cake pan. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes. Place cake pan on a wire rack and allow to cool completely. Evenly spoon cherry pie filling into cooled crust. In a large bowl., stir cream cheese with a sturdy spoon until soft. Add Cool Whip Free and vanilla extract. Mix gently to combine. Fold in marshmallows. Spread topping mixture evenly over cherry pie filling. Evenly sprinkle remaining 1/4 cup graham cracker crumbs over top. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Cut into 12 servings.
180 Calories, 4 grams fat, 4 grams Protein, 32 grams Carbohydrates, 263 mg. Sodium, 59 mg. Calcium and 2 grams fiber.
Since I started using so many of JoAnna's recipes, I have jars filled with crumbs...graham cracker, soda cracker, Ritz crackers, cornflakes and also keep nuts crushed in jars too. Just makes it faster to prepare the recipes when I have that part of the recipe ready before hand. I also had some potato bread that was getting stale so I toasted it and then crushed it up and added to a jar to use when a recipe calls for bread crumbs.
I've been exercising and following JoAnna's recipe now since Jan. 15th and I've lost 15 pounds and Bill is down about 10...and he isn't trying and doesn't exercise. And I'm never hungry! She is a god send in my opinion!