Photos by Aimee Broussard.

Sweet treats and drinks to make and share this Fourth of July

Don’t arrive to the party empty handed this Fourth of July. We rounded up a few of our favorite sweet recipes from Aimee Broussard. From sangria to cheesecake, there’s something for everyone, with a few extra-patriotic options for those who like to lean into a theme.

Bite-sized mini cheesecakes

Prep Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 1½ hours
24 vanilla wafer cookies
1 (8-oz.) pkg. cream cheese, softened
½ cup sugar
1 egg
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ cup fruit preserves
Whipped cream topping, store-bought or homemade
Desired fruit for topping
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line 24 mini muffin cups with paper liners. Place 1 vanilla wafer cookie in the bottom of each muffin well.
With an electric mixer on medium-high, or in the bowl of a stand mixer,  beat cream cheese, sugar, egg and vanilla extract for about 2 minutes or until mixture is light and fluffy. Spoon evenly into muffin cups (about 23 full). Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from muffin tin to a wire rack to cool completely. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours before serving.
Just before serving, top each cheesecake with about 1 tsp. fruit preserves, a swirl of whipped cream, and desired fruit. Garnish with mint and sprinkle a bit of powdered sugar, if desired.
Makes 24 mini cheesecakes.

Patriotic Porch Sangria

Prep Time: 1 hour
1 (750-ml) bottle dry white wine
1 cup white grape juice
2 cups fresh blueberries
1 lb. fresh strawberries, hulled and sliced
1 (750-ml) bottle Champagne
3 to 4 Granny Smith apples, thinly sliced (pears would be delicious, too)
Stir together white wine, grape juice, blueberries and strawberries in a large pitcher. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 4 hours so flavors can meld. (Note: the longer the mixture sits, the more red it will become.)
When ready to serve, stir in Champagne, apples and ice. Serve immediately.
TIP: Cut apple slices with a star-shaped cookie cutter (or you could freehand) and immediately add to sangria to prevent browning.
Makes 8 servings.

Sweet Peach Pound Cake

1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. butter, divided
2¼ cups sugar, divided
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour, divided
1 tsp. baking powder
½ tsp. salt
2½ cups fresh peaches, peeled and chopped
Grease a Bundt pan (or 10-in. tube pan) with 2 Tbsp. butter. Sprinkle pan with ¼ cup sugar. Cream remaining 1 cup butter, gradually adding remaining 2 cups sugar until well beaten. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla. In a medium bowl, combine 2¾ cups flour, baking powder and salt; gradually add to creamed mixture, beating until well blended. Dredge peaches with remaining ¼ cup flour. Fold peaches into batter. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake at 325 degrees for about 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Allow cake to cool in pan before inverting onto a plate or cake stand.
Makes 8 servings.

Strawberry Peach Rosé Sangria

2 (750-ml) bottles rosé
1 batch Strawberry Simple Syrup (recipe follows)
1⁄3cup peach schnapps
Juice of 1 lemon
1 pint strawberries, hulled and sliced
2 to 3 white peaches, sliced
3 to 4 cups lemon lime soda (Sprite, 7Up, etc)
Strawberry Simple Syrup:
1 cup strawberries, diced small
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
For Strawberry Simple Syrup, in a medium saucepan, combine strawberries, sugar and water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Once it reaches a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Strain strawberries and let syrup cool.
For sangria, combine rosé, Strawberry Simple Syrup, peach schnapps, lemon juice and strawberries in a pitcher, and stir until well combined. Fill wine glasses or cocktail glasses with ice, and fill halfway with sangria. Top with lemon lime soda.
Makes 10-12 servings.