A classic Italian panzanella (bread salad) combines juicy tomatoes and bread cubes. Here, Chris Cosentino swaps in stone fruits like apricots and peaches for the tomatoes. Then he pushes the dessert over the top by dolloping the "salad" with an airy zabaglione, a frothy sauce of egg yolks whipped with sweet dessert wine.
Pastry chef Jennifer McCoy of Craft in New York City bristles when other people offer to bring dessert to parties. "What are they thinking?" she says. "That's mine!" McCoy often brings this raspberry tart, with its creamy filling and pistachio-studded crust. She packs the components separately and assembles the tart just before serving.
This dessert is called a soufflé at Philipkutty's Farm, but it's much more like a rich, creamy pudding with deep tropical flavors and a sweet, nutty garnish. Here it's molded in an 8-inch square pan; the pudding can also be prepared in individual custard cups or ramekins. Cooking the pineapple mixture is key because raw pineapple contains an enzyme that prevents a pudding from setting.
Constance Snow's The Rustic Table offers smart, no-nonsense recipes from peasant cuisines around the world. Snow, who lives in New Orleans, also looks close to home for inspiration. Here, for instance, she makes one giant shortcake and layers it with warm, buttery peaches, then cuts it into wedges for serving.
Because they don't contain leavening (or dairy, which is prohibited at meat-based meals), coconut macaroon cookies are commonly served at seders. Adam Perry Lang wanted to play on the idea of a macaroon in this clever dessert, so he turned the cookie into a fluffy meringue with toasted coconut and ground almonds, which he then uses to top a juicy mixture of pineapple and mango.