Let’s make a Jello salad!
Where’d everybody go?
I know. I know. Jello salads have a bad reputation – and deservedly so, in many cases – but this! This is (and deserves to be) an exception!
Yes, the flavors are, at first, an odd mix, but you will not believe how perfectly this cool,
creamy – but zippy! – salad goes with tacos. Or, indeed, the Fractured Taco Casserole I served family – some of whom are wicked picky – the other weekend. Even one of my pickiest in-laws, who admitted that I could easily skip bringing this to any future family gathering finished her serving (yeh, it was small, but still!).
So… lemon jello. Lime jello. Crushed pineapple. Cottage cheese.
We’re all good, if a bit boring so far, right?
Now… we go in for the kill with the addition of prepared horseradish!
Mama Stamburg would approve.*
*Regular NPR listeners will know what I am talking about.
Note: a jello mold is ideal for this salad, but you can get the same, if less fancy, results with a bowl.
•1 small box lemon jello
•1 small box lime jello
•2 cups water
•1 cup mayonnaise
•1 cup cottage cheese
•20 oz can crushed pineapple, drained
•1/4 cup horseradish
•1/8 tsp salt
Note: if you like, you can up the horseradish to 1/2 cup. My original recipe, from my Aunt Buzz, only called for two tablespoons of horseradish, and I think 1/4 cup (four tablespoons) is a nice update; while friends with spicier palates think that 1/2 cup would be ideal.
To make the salad, stir the lemon and lime jello into two cups of boiling water until dissolved, then set aside to cool and thicken a bit on the counter for one hour.
This is the perfect time to well and truly drain your crushed pineapple!
After an hour, add the mayonnaise, cottage cheese, horseradish, well and truly drained pineapple, and salt to your blender and pulse until blended and smooth.
Add the cooled and slightly thickened jello and blend again until nicely mixed and pale green – think pistachio ice cream.
Pour into a bowl or mold, cover, and stash in the fridge for at least two hours or – always more better – overnight to set.
Note: if you are using a Tupperware-type mold, as I did, place the mold on a rimmed plate before stashing in the fridge – this’ll save you from mopping up any leakage before the salad has set.
When ready to serve, uncover the mold (or bowl) and set in a large bowl of warm water for a couple of minutes to loosen before inverting onto a serving plate.
Hint: with my mold, I found it useful to loosen the edges with a butter knife.
Slice and serve.
My Aunt Buzz always offered this along side her Fractured Taco Casserole and still today, decades later, I cannot imagine a better accompaniment.
Oh, and that casserole?
I have already posted it, but will feature it again, tomorrow, with ground turkey.
Thanks again, Aunt Buzz!