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Sugar Shock: Fruit Pizza Recipe


The sweets and baking arts are not my calling, though I enjoy  baking a wedding cake  for a crowd  because of  the challenge.   But through the years, I have latched on to a few, and I mean a few, recipes which have become known as “Family Favorites.”

One is Fruit Pizza.

Please do not mistake this goodie  for the pretty pictures of fresh fruit on a light crust that you might see in a Pampered Chef booklet or a Pillsbury Dough magazine ad.   This little pile of indulgence is heavy and sweet, chewy  and laden with fat and sugar  and could probably kill you, if you ate the whole thing.

The recipe came to Dave and I within a few weeks of our marriage from one Mrs.  Howard Helm  of Minot, North Dakota.   She was a faithful  KHRT radio listener, where Dave was the afternoon/evening dj at the time  and she stopped by the station to bring this dessert – in a time and place where it was received readily, without reservation and enjoyed by the whole staff.

This is old-fashioned-if-you’ve-gotta-die-of-something-it-may-as-well-be-dessert Fruit Pizza.   Nothing light and fresh about it – well, the fruit is until you bathe it in the “sauce.”   But it is pretty darn-tootin’ fun on occasion.   Tristan asked for it for his family birthday celebration and though we all get very excited about it initially, we can barely finish our servings and are bemoaning how rich it is before we finish.   But give it a couple of hours and we’re back.

Do you have the courage?


Old-Fashioned (Killer) Fruit Pizza

Crust: one roll of prepared sugar cookie dough, pressed onto a pizza round or into a cake pan or cookie sheet, baked 12-15 minutes (until browning).   Remove from oven, set aside to cool.

Sauce (make this while the crust is in the oven): 1/4 cup of water, 1/4 cup of lemon juice, 1 cup of frozen orange juice concentrate (don’t mix it with water-just the actual concentrate!), 1 cup of sugar, a dash of salt and 3 tablespoons of corn starch.   Whisk these and bring to bubbling in a saucepan.   Cook until thickened and then set aside to cool (must be totally cool before spooning over the fruit).

Filling:   Beat 8 oz. softened cream cheese with 1/2 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla.

Fruit: any combination of your favorites in season or frozen.   We love bananas, strawberries, kiwi and even mandarin oranges or fresh peaches.   Then we pop raspberries and/or blueberries on top because they look so pretty.   I used to place all the fruit in very careful patterns and designs, but when I started just using a cake pan, the sauce covered it all up anyway, so now I just throw it in.


  • Spread the cream cheese filling over the cooled crust.
  • Place fruit over the cream cheese.   Load it up and pack it on.
  • Spoon the sauce over the fruit.   Chill for a few hours or overnight.

Over the years, we have strayed from the traditional o.j. concentrate glaze and tried fruity combinations like mango-orange, or strawberry-grape.   I also put way less sugar in now, but you can’t tell!

My teeth hurt just recounting this.

The Tomato

How can I communicate the taste, the essence of the tomato?


The tomato, ripened as God intended on the vine, is more complex and flavorful than almost any other.   With the slightest sprinking of salt on a freshly thick-cut slice, the exploding, tingling zest of life is captured on your tongue, the tangy bite melting into a powerful, full taste of the summer season.    The suggestion of  blazing  days of sun and long, warm nights are all contained in the deep red, seeded fruit.    Tart and sweet at the same time, the tomato is the iconic garden fruit, which when ripened, is  the vegetable to which all others must defer.  

Pick maybe just before you actually think it is ripe, maybe the day before you’ll eat it.   Never, ever refrigerate.   Always slice at room temperature for peak intensity, flavor.

Then try to figure out: what on earth does a tomato taste like?   For I – am at a loss for words.

I love the home-grown, organic tomato and believe it should be wholeheartedly celebrated…Jeanie

NOTE:   Oh yes, I have written about the tomato before, here and here and here.

pictured: google image, but one of the best ways to enjoy garden fresh tomatoes.   Slice, top with fresh chunks of mazarella and chopped basil, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and sweet balsamic vinegar.

August 8: It’s a Zucchini Holiday

No kidding.   Today is really an “official” Zucchini Holiday, better known as “Sneak some Zuchini onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Night.”   Most of the “celebration” happens after sundown, apparently.  

I sent Stephanie home yesterday with an armload of zucchini and she  was searching  www.allrecipes.com  for a fresh and creative way to serve it and happened across the article on how to properly celebrate this holiday.   I am only printing portions of it here, but you may verify the whole thing by linking the title in the first paragraph.

By the way, my 3 favorite ways with zucchini are

  1. Tossed in an extra-virgin olive oil, sprinkled with garlic powder, salt and pepper, maybe some Mrs Dash or crushed red pepper flakes  and grilled just long enough for some beautiful black grill marks, as it caramelizes and gets sweet.
  2. Same as above, except popped under the broiler until you see the carmelization begin.
  3. Severed into 1/4″ succulent slices, dipped in Tempura batter (grab a box from the Asian food aisle for the simplest, crispest breading ever using very cold water) and fried in canola oil until light and crisp (not brown).   Dip in Ranch dressing.   This breading and frying technique works for mushrooms, cut up leftover chicken or pork, green tomatoes, corn on the cob.   Mmmmm.

Dave, of course, still prefers his zuchini shredded beyond recognition and turned into sort of a “stuffing-type” casserole.   Yes, he likes church-dinner food.

The article:

Sneak Some Zucchini Onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Night

By:   Allrecipes Staff

Celebrate this fun holiday on August 8!

Established by Pennsylvanian Tom Roy, this day encourages sharing. “Due to the overzealous planting of zucchini, citizens are asked to drop off baskets of the squash on neighbors’ doorsteps.”


About the holiday

A few suggestions from Tom Roy’s “Top 20 List for successful sneaking of Zucchini or otherwise ridding yourself of unwanted surplus summer squash:”

(Note:Allrecipes does not endorse any of these activities.)

(ANOTHER NOTE:   Nor does Jeanie)


  • Carefully place a dozen or more zucchini in a large, sturdy black plastic trash bag, then add a couple layers of unwanted clothing. Drive to nearest Goodwill or Salvation Army, hand over bag to nearest volunteer. Politely refuse any offered receipt. Leave quickly.
  • Look for out-of-the-way places which have signs posted, “Clean Fill Wanted.”
  • Under light of full moon, either stark naked or wearing full army camouflage, carrying a machete or any garden implement, run amuck in your zucchini patch, cutting and slashing. Be sure to thank Mother Nature for her bounty before and after this cathartic experience.
  • Gather all available plastic containers and freezer bags.  Puree all zucchini, even if it takes all night. Package, freeze,  and create an artistic, holiday label: “For Zucchini Nut Bread Recipe.” These  gifts are now ready to be freely given, along with copies of recipe, to  everyone on your Christmas list.


Do you have any ideas to add?…Jeanie


NOTE TO SELF: I am keeping mine: Zucchini summer pasta…zucchini brownies…stuffed zucchini…zucchini marmelade…zucchini parmesan…zucchini relish…stir-fried zucchini…Mexican zucchini soup…Crab-stuffed zucchini…chocolate chip zucchini muffins…need  I say more?




Never Trust a Zucchini

Seriously.   Don’t trust a zucchini.   Not ever.   Just don’t.

You go out to water early in the day before the sun has shown it’s face.   You see a little fruit looking so tender, so true.   You think about picking it, it is almost perfect.   But then it says to you, “Just wait until this evening-just before you want to put me on the grill.   I’ll be perfect then.   I’ll have plumped up becoming even more juicy.   I’ll just wait here.”

But 12.2 hours later, when you return, that same green fruit has gone from bomb pop size to summer sausage size (while you were unaware)  and is now the size of Popeye’s forearm.   Just like that!

Watch them.   Observe them closely.   This is the time of year they will outwit you and become useless for anything other than a shredded zuchini baked casserole and that is just not right.

I’ve warned you before.   I hope you’re heeding it…Jeanie

This google image is some  novice proudly displaying their 11-pound zuchini, as if they had anything to do with it.   Only non-gardeners are impressed with this because we who know the beast know that this is a monster from hell out of control!

Great recipe here for the wayward and trickster zuch.   Warning here.

NOTE: My true friends will rejoice with me in knowing that beginning the day after Heaven Fest I began harvesting just-ripe mini Romas (aka grape tomatoes) and Patio Tomatoes.   Is God good, or what?