The Dish


December 22, 2004|By Liz Atwood | By Liz Atwood,Sun Food Editor

Sweet and easy

Still looking for one more Christmas treat? Here's an easy one from Jif peanut butter.

Grease a 9-inch-by-9-inch pan. Cut 2 squares of unsweetened chocolate and melt in a double boiler. Set aside to cool.

In a medium bowl, beat 8 ounces of packaged cream cheese and 1 teaspoon of vanilla until light and fluffy. Gradually add 4 cups of confectioners' sugar and beat until well blended, scraping down the sides of the bowl.

Remove 1 cup of the cream-cheese mixture and mix into the cool, melted chocolate. Drop by spoonfuls into the greased pan. Mixture will be stiff. Place a piece of plastic wrap on top of the chocolate layer and press it with hands to spread evenly.

Add 2 cups of peanut butter to the remaining cream-cheese mixture. Mix well, scraping down sides of bowl. Take plastic off chocolate layer. Spread peanut-butter mixture on top of chocolate layer. Using the same method with the plastic wrap, push into pan evenly. Chill and cut into bite-sized shapes. Press half of a peanut into each shape. Makes 60.

Per serving: 101 calories; 6 grams fat; 4 milligrams cholesterol; 52 milligrams sodium; 3 grams protein; 10 grams carbohydrate

-- Recipe and analysis from Jif


When you gather friends and family to celebrate the holidays, make sure you know the proper way to raise a glass of good cheer.

Here are tips for toasting from the maker of Ridgemont Reserve 1792 Kentucky bourbon:

Only toast when everyone has something in his or her glasses.

When in a group of nine or more, stand when giving a toast.

If you're the subject of the toast, don't take a sip of your drink. Instead, thank the person toasting you and offer a toast in return.

When clinking glasses at the end of a toast, look at the person whose glass you're touching. Never look at the glass or at other people at the table.

When toasting as part of a large group, it isn't necessary to clink glasses. Simply raise your glass at the toast's end.

Just right for two

Responding to the growing number of baby boomers whose kids are leaving home, Pillsbury has introduced Cooking for Two, a program of tips, recipes and products aimed at helping empty nesters prepare meals.

Among the suggestions: using a toaster oven instead of a regular oven for energy savings; shopping the supermarket salad bar and deli; and looking for products with resealable packages. For more ideas and recipes, visit

Catch of the day

Now you can find whole tuna steaks in the canned-food aisle. Bumble Bee is offering ready-to-eat albacore tuna steaks packaged in easy-open vacuum-sealed packages.

The steaks come in three varieties: Lemon & Cracked Pepper, Mesquite Grilled and Ginger Soy.

They are available for $2.99 for a 4-ounce pouch in supermarkets nationwide.


Learn to make biscotti 7 p.m. Jan. 10 at For the Love of Food in Reisterstown. $45. Call 443-865-0630 or 410-833-5579.

Enjoy heart-healthy gourmet dining prepared by Baltimore's top chefs at Heartfest 2005, 7:30 p.m. Jan. 15 at Martin's West. $100. Call 410-560-2230.

The Dish welcomes food news and notes. Send to The Dish, Attn.: Liz Atwood, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278;

fax to 410-783-2519; e-mail

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