If you live in a place where Jello is the official state snack, right in the heart of the Jello Belt, you’ve got to have some kind of jello salad for Thanksgiving dinner, right? I’ve never really been a fan of Jello, despite being a life-long Utah resident, so keep that in mind when I tell you how much I loved this salad. It tasted much better than I ever imagined Jello could taste, and with cranberries, celery, and pecans, this tasted like a salad not a dessert. Unfortunately, for whatever reason, I couldn’t get a really good photo even though I tried twice. Anyone who understands more than I do about digitial photography, I’d love to know why the camera wouldn’t focus correctly. Maybe the Jello was just too shiny? But even with the slightly fuzzy photo, you can see that besides tasting great, this was a beautiful cranberry color.
If you’re a South Beach Dieter, using sugar free Jello is essential here, but even with that change, there’s still some sugar in the canned cranberry sauce. However, pecans, celery, and sugar-free jello are all good South Beach choices, Thanksgiving only comes once a year, and this is something you won’t eat a huge amount of, so I’d still consider it a good holiday option as a once-in-a-while treat.
I found this recipe in the Southern Living Christmas Cookbook, which I bought when it appeared in the faculty room at school as part of a book promotion, and I highly recommend this book. It features all kinds of interesting looking recipes, including some very, very easy recipes for seasonal holiday dishes that I thought looked great.
1 3-ounce package sugar-free raspberry gelatin
1 cup boiling water
1 16-ounce can whole berry cranberry sauce
3/4 cup celery, very finely chopped
1/2 cup chopped pecans
lettuce of your choice for serving, optional
Combine gelatin and boiling water in a glass bowl, stirring until all gelatin is dissolved. Chill until mixture is the consistency of unbeaten egg white (about 45 minutes in refrigerator.) Stir in cranberry sauce, chopped pecans, and diced celery.
Spray square glass casserole dish with non-stick spray or oil lightly with vegetable oil. Spoon mixture into dish, cover, and chill until firm, about 3 hours. Serve as a salad, on a bed of lettuce or arugula if desired.
I don’t have a lot of time to enter food blog events, but I didn’t want to miss the first time Anna from Morsels and Musings ever hosted an event, and this salad is perfect for her theme of Festive Food Fair. If you want to join in and make a festive food for the event, you have until December 1 to send the link to Anna.