November 1, 2011

You Can Thank Me Later For This One

When I was really young we used to celebrate Thanksgiving with all my aunts, uncles, and cousins at my grandparent's house. I remember vividly the first year my aunt Jenae brought that famous orange jello of hers. And I especially remember eyeing the window each subsequent year, awaiting the arrival of that beloved orange, pomegranate, apply goodness. I loved that jello. I lived for that jello. I was obsessed with that jello. Then there was a long dark, desolate period in my life once our extended got too outrageously big to celebrate Thanksgiving at my grandma's house and I had to endure Thanksgiving after Thanksgiving without that blessed orange treat. 
Until last year.
Last year my family all Thansgivinged at my sister's house in Texas and I made sure the orange, pomegranate, apple, almond and whipped cream jello was on the menu. I made the jello myself- no recipe needed- my eight year old mind clinging hard to that list of miraculously compatible ingredients. I prepared the jello. I presented said jello at the Thanksgiving dinner table, and all joking aside... that jello was THE ONE dish that provided not a single leftover. In fact, the jello was so good (I'm claiming no credit here for my jello making abilities. Trust me when I say the jello will speak for itself.) that evening I made an exact replica of jello #1. (I personally think the jello is better than pie.) Anyway... I was thrilled yesterday when I realized I had nearly every ingredient on hand to make this. After a quick run to Albertson's for the orange jello package, jello making was in order. And jello make is what I did. And I hope you will too after you get a load of this.
The line-up:
You will need:
1 6 oz. package orange jello
water (It doesn't have to be smart water. Dumb water is just fine. wah-wah.)
seeds of 2 pomegranates
1 and 3/4 packages of these slivered almonds (it'll be about 3/4 measured cup)
2-3 large shredded apples (select a variety that's both sweet and tart like honeycrisp or pink lady.)
whipping cream (one pint was WAY too much for this recipe)
sugar (for the whipped cream)

1. Prepare your apples by peeling them, ( I like to try to peel mine in one long string so I feel lovely like Meg Ryan on Sleepless in Seattle) then grate 'em up. (This part is fun.) Once they're all peeled and grated, set them aside. And quit eating them.
2. Prepare your pomegranates. I have no pictures of this because I took the easy route and used already plucked out pomegranate seeds. If you have a Trader Joe's around go there and get these if you're feeling lazy. If not, take a deep breath, and make sure you remove your pomegranate seeds in a sink or bowl full of water so the seeds fall to the bottom, the whitish/yellowish membrane floats to the top, and you don't end up with maroon pomegranate juice all over your shirt /Anthropologie blouse /apron /pajamas.
3. Prepare jello according to package instructions. (i.e. boil 2 cups water, pour over jello in 9x13 pan. mix till dissolved. then add 2 cups cold water to that mixture.)

4. Now it's time to add your fillings to this here jella. Apples go in firstly.
 (Notice there are quite a few. Don't let this frighten you.)
5. Pomegranate seeds go in next. Mmmm...
6. And last but not least your sweet little slivered almonds. (Remember how obsessed with these I am? I had these with every meal today. I couldn't help myself.) You'll wanna mix this up a little once all the ingredients are in there so they're all very well incorporated. We want apples, almonds, and pomegranates in each bite. I used a fork to accomplish this.
You may need to make some room in your fridge now. And slip her on in. Steady... Steady...
7. Now you're gonna have to wait a while.
8. After about five hours or so, you'll need to start whippin' up your cream. And don't you dare try to shortcut here. Cool Whip is not an adequate replacement for whipped cream. It tastes nothing like it. Do not use Cool Whip. I repeat- do not use cool whip. So... start whippin' your cream.
9. And once it starts to thicken a little get your sugar ready for distribution...
10. Add your sugar a tablespoon at a time. Taste test as you go to see how much sugar you need. I won't hold it against you if you take advantage of this opportunity a little bit. I did. 
11. Alrighty. After you've made sure, double sure, triple sure that your whipped cream tastes good (not Cool Whip people) you'll need to remove the set jello from the fridge and slather on a solid layer of that whipped cream. Don't be stingy now. This may be the best part here.

Voila. Please prepare yourself to eat now. Oh man it's good.

Holy Moly that took a long time to write. Ha ha. What a waste of time! Please try this. You won't be sorry. I can promise you that. 
Happy jello making eating!

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