Saturday, April 16, 2011


Don't you love this?  An antique Jell-O cookbook touting "wonder dishes" - Ha!  My mom has a soft spot for Jell-O and has started collecting pamphlet size Jell-O cookbooks like this.   

The best thing about cookbooks from the 1950's is reading the introductions about how you can wow your guests with your colorful and delicious creations.  They almost make it sound like the circus is coming to town, right in your very own kitchen!

All kidding aside, I always make Jell-O at the holidays.  I've made this layered Jell-O so many times that when Easter approaches, my friends ask, "Are you making your Jell-O?"  They know me well. 

Are there any holidays that wouldn't be complete without your Jell-O?

Layered Jell-O Salad:

Boiling water
7 (4-serving size) boxes of different flavors of classic Jell-O
1 large carton of sour cream

Choose a glass rectangular pan, about 13 x 9. Spray with plain non-stick cooking spray.

Stir 1 1/4 cups of boiling water into 1 package of Jell-O. Stir until dissolved. Pour 3/4 of the mixture into the pan. Place in the refrigerator. Leave the balance of the hot Jell-O on the counter to cool to room temperature. When the Jell-O in the pan has set, it is time to make the creamy layer. Mix 3 Tablespoons of (room temperature) sour cream into the remaining liquid Jell-O on the counter. Whisk gently until the sour cream is incorporated and there are no lumps. Having both ingredients at room temperature helps this. Slowly pour the creamy mixture onto the set Jell-O in the pan. Use the bowl of the spoon to slow down the stream of liquid, so that the pouring liquid doesn't dent the layer below. Tip the pan to coat the entire first layer in creamy Jell-O, if necessary. Repeat until all of your layers are built!


Be sure to let each layer set before proceeding to the next. I make a few layers each day and it seems easier.

Buy flavors that are different colors so that each layer looks distinct. Lemon (yellow) next to Apricot (lt orange) is hard to see. Put blue (watermelon) in between. I love the "Island Pineapple," be sure to get that!

To serve, slice into squares with a knife and lift out with a small spatula. Serve from the pan, it can only be moved once - pan to plate. But it is gorgeous and delicious!

The result is ALWAYS gorgeous and perfect for a big Easter dinner. I wanted to show you a picture, but by the time it is ready to serve, you wouldn't have time to make it yourself! You really must see my finished layered Jell-O here.


Elaine said...

That is a great image. I enjoy collecting the vintage cookbook pamphlets and I have a few jell-o ones, but not this one. I make jell-o often, usually with fruit. It's such a light and refreshing dessert.

Anne Reeves said...

Oh, Elaine, I'm glad you collect vintage cookbooks toos. So fun and I love the graphics!