Easy, Elegant Summer Desserts

You've been grilling all summer, but have you forgotten about dessert?

"Early Show" contributor Katie Lee showed Thursday how to bring the sweet stuff back.

Her easy summer desserts, she says, will add an elegant touch that will elevate any backyard barbeque.


S'mores Brownies

"These are a take on the classic s'mores that everybody knows and loves from sitting around the campfire," Katie points out. "But if you don't have a campfire these s'mores brownies are a perfect alternative to satisfy your hunger for that classic campsite dessert."

1 1/2 cups crushed graham crackers
3 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 box brownie mix
3 cups large marshmallows

Preheat oven to 325°F.

In a medium bowl, mix graham cracker crumbs and sugar. Stir in melted butter. Lightly coat an 8 x 8 inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Transfer crumb mixture to baking dish. Use a measuring cup to press the crumbs evenly over the bottom of the pan. Bake until golden brown, about 10 to 15 minutes.

While the crust bakes, prepare brownie mix according to package instructions. Pour batter over prepared crust. Bake until a toothpick comes out mostly clean, about 40 minutes.

Remove from oven and position rack under broiler. Preheat broiler. Top brownies with marshmallows and put under the broiler for about 1 to 2 minutes with the oven door open a few inches. Watch brownies while they are under the broiler to prevent burning.

Let cool completely on a wire rack. Cut into squares and serve.

Peaches 'n Cream Pavlova

"This is a very elegant looking dessert that is surprisingly easy to make," Katie says.

For Pavlova:
4 extra-large egg whites
1 cup superfine sugar
3 teaspoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon white vinegar

For Whipped Cream:
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons superfine sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For peaches:
3 peaches, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup sugar
1 bunch mint, for garnish

METHOD: For Pavlova:
Preheat oven to 300°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Place the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer. Beat on high speed for one minute. With the mixer still on, slowly add sugar. Continue to beat on high until glossy and stiff peaks form, about 4 more minutes. Turn off mixer and use a spatula to gently fold in cornstarch and vinegar.

Scoop the meringue into the middle of the prepared pan and spread into a nine inch circle. Transfer to oven and reduce heat to 250°F. Bake one hour. Turn off oven, do not open door, and let meringue cool completely, about one hour.

For the whipped cream:
Using an electric mixer, whip cream and sugar until soft peaks form. Do not over-beat. Stir in vanilla.

For peaches:
In a medium bowl, combine peaches and sugar. Refrigerate at least 4 hours and up to overnight.

Place meringue disk on a serving plate and spread with whipped cream. Spoon peaches into the center of the meringue, leaving a border around the edge. Garnish with mint. Serve immediately.