Cranberry Apple Jello Salad

Many families argue about whether a can of jellied cranberry sauce or homemade whole-berry cranberry sauce belongs on the Christmas table. But maybe, just maybe, if they were creating Cranberry Apple Jello Salad, they wouldn’t have anything to fight over. It’s the kind of “jello salad” you remember your grandmother making: hard enough to pour into a mold but still jiggly, and studded with fruit, nuts, and other delicacies. It has everything for everyone and is a throwback to the past.

I know the name says cranberry apple, but there’s also pineapple in this “salad.” It provides sweetness and acidity; it’s a fantastic addition. You’ll need a can of crushed pineapple, which you’ll drain but save the juice from. You’ll add some orange juice to that pineapple juice, followed by enough cold water to bring the total to three cups. This is placed in a pot, and the liquid is brought to a boil before being removed from the heat and two boxes of raspberry jello are added.

That may seem strange, but after everything is said and done, you can’t pinpoint the raspberry flavor; it’s just fruity-tart jello salad. It also works.Whisk, whisk, whisk until the jello is completely dissolved…… Add a can of cranberry sauce and mix well. (Please, the entire berry variety.)Transfer the jello/cranberry mixture to a bowl and chill until it has cooled and thickened…

… and then add plenty of diced apples, walnuts, and the drained pineapple can. You can serve it in a molded form or straight out of a bowl at this point, but it will need to cool for a few hours to firm up. If you’re using a mold, err on the side of caution and plan for at least five hours, preferably overnight. If you’re serving it in a bowl, it’s okay if it’s scoopable but not solid yet; four hours will be enough.

This isn’t a meal you see on many dinner tables these days, but it’s perfect for the holidays when nostalgia and gastronomic traditions collide. Every bite of this reminds me of something my grandmother used to dish that always intrigued me with both its bounce and flavor.

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