This is my great grandmother Burkholder's Sunny Fruit Salad recipe. She made her transition when I was very young before I could try this, but my family says it rocked.

1 package, lemon Jello
1 cup, hot water
1 cup, cold water
1 orange, peeled and all the membrane/pith removed
1 banana, sliced
1 red apple, peeled and diced
1 cup, celery, thinly sliced

Dissolve the Jello in hot water. Add the cold water. Chill until slightly, but not all the way, thickened. Fold in the fruit and celery. Pour the mixture into a mold and chill it until firm.

At serving time, unmold the salad onto crisp lettuce and garnish with mayonnaise. This also makes a good dessert by garnishing it with whipped cream instead.

Mom's Fruit Salad

My mother-in-law's recipe, a traditional family favorite.

  • 1 large can fruit salad, drained.
  • 1 bag mini marshmallows
  • 2 Banana's, peeled and sliced.
  • 2 medium apples, peeled, cored, and coarsely chopped.
  • 1 large container, commercial whipped topping. (Cool Whip.)
  • Fold solid ingredients into the whipped topping, chill 1 hour, serve.

Citrus salad

I go through this alarmingly quickly when I take the time to make it. But I would call this 4 generous servings for everyone else.

2 blood oranges if you can get them, sectioned
2 preferably pink or red grapefruit, sectioned
4 tangerines, sectioned. This is optional for those who don't mind the effort of sectioning small, extremely juicy fruit! If not, use 2 more oranges of any variety.
about 1 tbsp honey, a light flavor like the commonly available clover or orange blossom works well.

Place all the sectioned fruit and juices into a container or glass bowl, mix gently to distribute the different varieties without breaking them apart or mashing them. I leave even the largest grapefruit sections whole as they will keep their texture longer and, anyway, I prefer the appearance. Drizzle with the honey, cover and chill. It will keep for a few days, and is better after chilling for at least an hour.

This is an extremely refreshing snack, and the juice that collects in the dish may well be the best part. The different colored fruit wedges are lovely, and the honey takes any acidic edge off of the grapefruit. Don't overdo the honey, though. A little goes a long way, and the rest of the fruit is very sweet.

How to section a relatively spherical citrus fruit: This is a messy process which should only be attempted if your hands are free of cuts and broken skin. Or wear rubber gloves.

Cut off the stem and blossom ends of the fruit so that the membrane is cut away and you have exposed pulp. Then, follow the shape of the fruit and cut off the rest of the peel, making sure to remove all the membrane as you cut.

Take your paring knife and slide it between the membrane of a section and the pulp. Slide the knife until it reaches the angle in the membrane at the center of the fruit. Do not cut through the membrane. Instead, twist the knife so that the blade scrapes up the membrane on the other side of the section. The wedge of pulp, entirely free of membrane, should pop right out.

If there are any bits of membrane or pith still attached, remove them and any seeds. Repeat until the fruit is entirely disemboweled. Then squeeze the bits you are left with for the juice. The membrane and the peel can contain quite a bit of juice depending on how careful you are while sectioning, and the condition of the fruit. Note that tangerines and tangelos tend to have thinner membrane and are, well, squishier so they are a bit more difficult to section.

Tiny Fruit Salad

I loathe fruit salad.

Really. My experience with it has been in two forms:

However, when I was little I watched Sesame Street. And one of their segments featured, I think, other small children learning how to share and making fruit salad - all silent, with musical background, in that strange 70s Children's Television Workshop way. They had so many closeups of big fat blueberries and juicy tasty fruit going in there... it's haunted me ever since. It has become the spectre pushing me to taste fruit salad after fruit salad, never finding what I need.

Until now.

Now, there is Tiny Fruit Salad. It is made with tiny fruit. Champagne grapes the size of the bubbles in the drink they make, small fat donut peaches, miniature wild strawberries, fat sweet blueberries and raspberries and blackberries and gemlike red currants.

If it needs to be sliced up, it doesn't go in the salad. This makes it faster to prepare, and sweeter, tastier. As generic-man excellently explains in donut peach, smaller fruit is more flavorful because all the juicy flavor is packed in even more tightly.

Those peaches do need to be sliced up: see, I'm already breaking the rules. The rule, though, for tiny fruit salad, is that there can be one Thing To Slice, one bigger kind of fruit, in any given bowl of the fruit salad, to enhance the texture.

The same proves to be true for the grapes and fraises du bois: they are as sweet as they are small. As for many other berries, they can be a dangerous element: a few sour berries (like many raspberries, like white currants) adds tang, but too many and you just get sour salad, fit only to be sugared up and eaten with cream... not that that's a bad thing. But it isn't fruit salad. Buy organic berries, if you can, if for no other reason than because blackberries, normally-sized strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries in particular (in that wild and crazy berry community) tend to be sour or even bitter when commercially grown. Visit How to get organic produce at conventional produce prices and enjoy yourself for a while.

This is all you need to make it: an idea of what it should be like, some suggestions as to ingredients. But I know you wacky noders. You're going to want lists. Well, you may have two more, and then off with you.

What to Do

This is one combination that I enjoyed, when this fruit salad was first born.

  • One box of (organic, at the time) champagne grapes (I don't know why they came in boxes. I would estimate, should you find them loose, that a box amounts to about two handfuls of grape bunches);
  • One box of red currants (They came in a little plastic tin of sorts, perhaps four ounces' worth?);
  • One box of (organic) blackberries ("Nature made this perfect food! We'd better surround it with plastic, quick!");
  • Four donut peaches, sliced into happy chunks for your tongue;
  • One big box of organic blueberries (They were the happiest blueberries on earth, and probably there were six ounces or so of them left after I finished my mid-salad-making snack.)

The blackberries and blueberries could just get dumped in a big big bowl. I don't wash my fruit. I am lazy that way. I also do not tell this to people who are visiting my house and eating my food. Now you know all my secrets. The peaches were sliced in half, twisted to open 'em up (like you do to an avocado, if you spend too much time watching cooking shows), de-pitted, and cut up quickly.

It's the grapes and currants that take time; they have to be pulled gently from their stems with quick light fingertips to avoid bursting them... but the burst ones found a welcoming home in my mouth, so that's all right.

What Not to Do

  • One box regular, pesticidey raspberries
  • One box white currants
  • One box aging fraises du bois, or wild strawberries
  • One tub huckleberries

    Woo! That's sour!!

    It does, however - when mixed with a heap of the sweetener of your choice and some cream - make a nice topping for french toast. Tasty fruit is always salvageable somehow.

    In Closing

    When made properly, or at all, Tiny Fruit Salad should be a little like eating a giant bowl full of jewels. There should, ideally, be some mix of fruit (and berries) you love and berries (and fruit) you've never tried before. It should be full of shining sweet things that are tiny and flavorful and you can't quite believe it's all for you.

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