Molded Salad.. Why??

At a point  in human history approximately the mid to late 1600’s some guys( a French Dude and an English Dude will forever be locked in a who’s first battle) discovered that If you boil beef bones you get a gelatinous pure protein. ….Fast forward thru the Napoleonic Wars where soldiers were drinking bone broth way before it became a Paleo health trend. Don’t slow down yet a bunch of stuff in Europe happened which resulted in the manufacturing of Jelly and Jam……Keep flying thru History  to 1894 when Charles Knox  was bummed his wife was spending so much time in the kitchen making gelatin he went to the garage and invented pre granulated gelatin that were formed into sheets that dissolved in liquid he than sold Knox Gelatin door to door. In 1896 That same wife of Knox’s  published a cook book called Dainty Desserts, guess that whole get her out of the kitchen thing backfired….. There is a complicated  thing with the invention, lack of money  to keep it afloat and sale of the Jell-o  name in the late 1800’s. It was the “Damn I could have bought Apple Stock at $18’s a share ” of its time. The rest is history you probably know There were jingles. “Watch it wiggle see it jiggle ..”referred to a fruity dessert and not body parts on a woman I say woman not to be sexist but I ask  does anyone really want to see a man wiggle and jiggle even if you love him dearly?? I am saying No.  Bill Cosby spokesperson’ing for Jello back before he was Vile & Gross.  He may be disgusting but the Ad campaign brought Jello back from the brink of being Jello no more.  Now  we are here at the end of the current timeline Jello shots are a staple at every house party and when was the last time you were at a picnic, graduation party or pot luck  that there was not a fruity flavored salad with Jello in it.

Apparently Mormons and Minnesotans, folks from Wisconsin,  Illinois and Ohio  have a deep love of all things made with Gelatin. Now I say that with absolute certainty because I read the first part on the Internet..Utah Home of Mormons and Salt Lake city in particular has become known as the “Jello Belt” (The internet said so ) and the state snack food is Jello. The stuff about Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois and Ohio is first hand knowledge  by me Tripping Vittles because I lived there and I saw people eat Jello.  Orange jello with mandarin oranges in Minnesota.  Lime with pineapple in Wisconsin , Strawberry  with cream cheese and pretzel in Illinois and Ohio seems to dig the lime stuff with cool whip and pistachios. This is all very scientific as I ate them and liked them.

Needless to say I got excited when I was going thru my grandmothers recipe box and found in her handwriting a Recipe entitled “Mystery Salad” and it had a star next to it with her writing “Very Different and VG(very good)”

Mystery Salad Recipe

After quizzing my Mom she remembers this was a favorite of her parents when they were living in Florida. We will make it together my mother stated remembering her mother and me getting to cook with my mom.  It was after all one of the things I had envisioned for tripping Vittles.

We start production The recipe is so easy ….


Mystery Salad

  • 1 small box Raspberry Jello
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 1-10oz can chopped tomatoes(yeah i know sounds gross but hold on)
  • 4 drops Tabasco Sauce

Dissolve the water and Raspberry jello together. Add rest of ingredients stirring well, pour into mold. Refrigerate once firm remove from mold and serve.

Beautiful Photo, Vile & Gross Gelatin Mold

It turned out beautiful!! It is one of my best photos thus far so I used it twice in this post.  Little did I know it was Vile. The VG on that recipe card stood for Vile & Gross!!

We had a great laugh and moved on until shortly there after my mother came home with this gem.

1960 Knox Gelatin Cookbook.

A whole cook book dedicated to the art of making gelatin molds. Now you may ask yourself what on earth could I make if I had the time and inclination…Here is a recipe for Jellied Gazpacho….Because regular Gazpacho is just not thick enough.

Gelatinous Gazpacho Recipe

Now after you have had your first Course you maybe saying what on earth should I mold into my supper tonight…. Knox Gelatin and I have the answer for you Cottage Cheese and Kidney Beans Nummmmyy!!

Delicious Cottage Cheese and Kidney Bean Entree

Now as much as I make fun I have to admit I love most desserts made with Gelatin the fruit the whip cream the flavors they almost always seem to work.  I have not made the following dessert but if I were going to make anything out of this cookbook it would probably be this dessert. Bavarian Cream.

Bavarian Cream does not look too bad 

I wish I could tell you I was going to make at least the bavarian Cream but alas I am not.. I was scared from the Mystery Salad and before I pick up another box of Gelatin of any kind I will have to evaluate what the outcome will be… Jello shots are even off the table for a little while. 😉