Try a tasty trick for April Fool’s Day Saturday

Watch the surprise on your family’s faces when they sample these faux dinner foods that will shake up meals

Celebrate April Fool’s Day by playing a tasty trick on family and friends.

Use unexpected ingredients to make “faux” foods, and watch their faces as they bite into something completely unexpected. For example, peel a banana and spread peanut butter all over it to give it the appearance of a hot dog. Serve it in a hot dog bun with some strawberry preserves drizzled over the “hotdog” to make it look like ketchup.

Serve spaghetti squash and a mixture of cheese, cracker crumbs and pecan “meatballs” or a pizza topped with creamy cheese and fruit.

Try a special bagel sandwich, slicing a plain cake doughnut in half to resemble a plain bagel. Brush the top of the doughnut with honey and sprinkle with chopped chocolate-toffee bits.

Make a filling by beating 1/4 cup cream cheese, 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract. Spread on the bottom half of the doughnut, and top it with thinly sliced papaya or mango to simulate smoked salmon. For a tomato slice and chopped scallions, roll out a red gummy candy and chop up a green gummy candy.

But the fun doesn’t have to be reserved for lunch and dinner. Get the day off to a quick start with a surprise breakfast, perhaps a serving of faux eggs.

And don’t forget dessert. Cake made of meatloaf and topped with mashed potatoes tinted with food coloring will be a creative “end” to your meal.

Just don’t forget to yell “April Fool’s Day. Got ya” when your family bites into these unique foods.

Following are a few ideas for April Fool’s foods from and


Taco Bowl

Waffle bowls

Chocolate ice cream


Maraschino cherries

Black licorice

Whipped cream

Sweetened coconut flakes

Place a handful of sweetened coconut flakes in a small plastic bag. Drop in yellow and red food coloring. Seal bag without air and knead with your hands to achieve an orange color that looks similar to cheese.

Add more coconut to a separate bag with green food coloring. Knead until it looks like lettuce.

Cut out black licorice and roll it to make olives. Drain some maraschino cherries, setting them aside to dry a little.

Coarsely chop a handful of pecans to coarse crumb. Place a few scoops of chocolate ice cream in a large freezer bag and add the pecans. Seal the bag without air in it and knead until the ice cream looks similar to ground beef. Place in the freezer to firm up again.

Set out the waffle bowls. Fill the base with chocolate ice cream. Top with a layer of the pecan-coated chocolate ice cream, then add a dollop of whipped cream, smoothing the top with the back of a spoon to look like sour cream. Add the prepared “toppings” — dyed coconut, cherries and olives— and serve.



Chicken Nuggets

Pound cake

Vanilla frosting

Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal

Strawberry or raspberry jam

Thinly slice pound cake. Reserve some slices for fries, then cut the remaining slices into nugget shapes. Place “nuggets” on a wire cooling rack and place the rack on top of a sheet pan.

Warm 1/2 cup vanilla frosting in a microwave-safe container in the microwave until melted. Pour melted frosting evenly over as many “nuggets” as possible. Repeat  until all the cakes are evenly covered.

Place a few cups of cereal in a large bag and crush with the bottom of a frying pan or meat mallet to get coarse crumbs. Transfer crumbs to a bowl. Take one “nugget” at a time and dredge in the crushed cereal. Return to the wire cooling rack to harden.

  Cut reserved slices with a crinkle cutter to make fries and serve with strawberry or raspberry jam.


Onion Rings

10  licorice pastels

10 Twizzlers rainbow twists

5 ounces white candy coating, melted

3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs

Place a pastel in the end of a twist. Attach the other end of twist to pastel, forming a ring. Repeat with remaining pastels and twists.

Place melted candy coating and cracker crumbs in separate shallow bowls. Dip rings in coating allowing excess to drip off, then roll in crumbs. Place on waxed paper; let stand until set and serve.



Orange Jello Slices


Packaged Jello or 2 cups orange juice and 3-1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin

Wash the oranges, cut off the top and remove the center of the oranges, leaving behind the rind.

If using packaged Jello, follow on the instructions on the box. If using juice, whisk 1 cup juice with unflavored gelatin. Set aside to bloom for about five minutes.

Bring another cup of juice to a boil. Pour it over the bloomed gelatin and juice. Whisk to combine until smooth.

Pour Jello or juice and gelatin mixture into the orange rinds. Chill in the refrigerator two to four hours, until set. Slice the oranges into segments and serve.

Nacho Normal Cheesecake

For cheesecake:

2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, room temperature

2/3 cup plus 1/4 cup sugar

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 large eggs

1/2 cup sour cream

For chips:

1 roll refrigerated pie dough

Flour, for dusting

1 tablespoon milk

2 tablespoons sugar

For salsa and garnishes:

8 red Swedish Fish

1 cup low-sugar strawberry jam

3 strands green licorice twists

6 black licorice dots

3 tablespoons sour cream

3 tablespoons chocolate-covered raisins

For cheesecake, beat cream cheese with a mixer until smooth. Add 2/3 cup sugar, lemon zest, lemon juice and vanilla. Beat well. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Tint the batter orange with yellow and red food coloring.

Spray a nine-inch pie plate with cooking spray. Pour in the batter and bake in a 350-degree oven for 25 to 30 minutes, until puffed and almost set.

Mix sour cream and remaining sugar; spread over the hot cheesecake and bake five more minutes. Let cool, then chill two hours.

To make the chips, unroll pie dough on a lightly floured surface and roll out to flatten slightly. Brush dough with milk and sprinkle with sugar. Cut dough into 2-1/2-inch-wide strips.

Cut each strip into as many 2-1/2-inch triangles as possible. Place triangles about one inch apart on two parchment-lined baking sheets. Bake in batches in a 450-degree oven for seven to 10 minutes, until light golden. Transfer to a rack and cool completely.

For salsa and garnishes, cut Swedish Fish into 1/2-inch pieces and toss with two tablespoons strawberry jam. For chiles, cut green licorice on the diagonal into 1/8-inch-thick slices.

For olives, cut black licorice dots into 1/4-inch-thick rounds. Use a straw or pastry tip to remove a circle from the center of each round.

Tint the sour cream orange with yellow and red food coloring to look like melted cheese. Spoon orange sour cream into a resealable plastic bag. Press out the excess air and seal.

Press the pie “chips” into the cheesecake. Add the black licorice, chocolate-covered raisins and some green licorice and jam-coated Swedish Fish.

Snip a small corner from the bag of orange sour cream and pipe a few dots on the cheesecake for the melted cheese. Serve with extra chips on the side, and make extra salsa by mixing leftover candies and jam.



April Fools’ Crab Cakes

2 four-ounce cartons vanilla ice cream

2 cups white bread cubes

2 cups shredded coconut

3 beaten eggs

Vegetable oil

For tartar sauce:

1/4 cup heavy cream

4 ounces chopped white chocolate

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons rum

Grated zest of 1/2 lime and 1/2 orange

2 tablespoons chopped pistachios

Cut each carton of vanilla ice cream in half crosswise to make four disks. Freeze 30 minutes. Pulse bread cubes and shredded coconut in a food processor, then spread on a plate. Remove the cartons and press the ice cream disks into the crumb mixture, covering all sides. Reserve the remaining crumbs. Freeze disks one hour, until hard.

Microwave tartar sauce ingredients at 50 percent power for one minute. Whisk until creamy, then set aside to cool.

Dip the disks in beaten eggs, then press in the reserved crumbs and freeze at least one more hour.

Heat three inches vegetable oil until 350 degrees in a deep skillet. Fry the ice cream two to three minutes, until golden. Drain on paper towels, then serve immediately with tartar sauce.



Cheese Wheel Cake

Butter cookies, for serving

1 16.5-ounce box yellow cake mix, plus required ingredients

1 16-ounce tub plus 1 cup vanilla frosting

1 bunch grapes, cut into clusters

1 large pasteurized egg white, lightly beaten

3/4 cup sugar

Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

1 24-ounce package rolled red fondant

1 to 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Prepare cake mix as the label directs, then divide between two nine-inch parchment lined round cake pans coated with cooking spray. Bake as directed.

Let cakes cool about 15 minutes in the pans, then remove to a rack and cool completely.

Using a small serrated knife, trim the top edge of each cake at an angle to give it a rounded shape.

Put one cake layer on wax paper or parchment, trimmed-side down. Spread with frosting and top with the other cake, trimmed-side up. Cover the whole cake with frosting, reserving one cup. Freeze at least 30 minutes.

To make the sugared grape, brush grapes with the beaten egg white, then spoon granulated sugar on top. Let dry at least one hour at room temperature.

Dust a work surface with confectioners’ sugar. Roll out one-quarter of the fondant until about 1/8-inch thick, dusting with more confectioners’ sugar as needed. Cut out an 8-inch circle of fondant and place on a sheet of wax paper or parchment. Center the cake on top.

Add the scraps to the remaining fondant and roll out into a 13-inch circle, about 1/8-inch thick. Drape the fondant over the cake to cover completely. Smooth fondant with your hands and tuck it in at the base of the cake. Trim the excess with a knife. Cut out a wedge of the cake.

Tint reserved frosting pale yellow with food coloring. Spread on the cut sides of the cake. Rub vegetable oil all over the fondant. Arrange on a board with the cookies and grapes..






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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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Port Washington, WI 53074
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