For everyday options, Barnard offers Roasted Strawberries, gloriously glazed with butter and sugar, among other fresh fruit recipes. Her Easiest-Ever Dessert Sorbet requires only the genius of freezing a can of apricots, then pureeing them, along with their syrup, in the food processor. Bittersweet Chocolate Drops are a cookie treat to make using Barnard's "melt-add-stir" technique, which produces cookie dough almost instantly. You need one pot, one baking pan, and no bowl. While Barnard believes in timesaving ingredients, from precut fresh fruit to frozen puff pastry, she also proves you can make good-as-grandma's Double Chocolate Pudding, from scratch, in a few minutes.
Short & Sweet's 150 recipes include something for everyone, from elegant, sophisticated Chocolate Hazelnut Mousse (which calls for marshmallow fluff) and a custardy Cherry Clafoutis any French chef would enjoy, to Classic Quick Fudge made with condensed milk. (This shortcut guarantees silky results, while it eliminates cooking the sugar to just the correct point and beating the fudge to make it creamy.) Thanks to this book, even the most novice cook or time-pressed hostess can serve up the same scrumptious, creative homemade desserts shown in Short and Sweet's eight mouthwatering color photos every day. --Dana Jacobi