Sunday, August 21, 2011

Jello Love

Can I just say that I love potlucks??  I really love them.  I love the anticipation and day-dreaming about lovelys I'll get to put on my Styrofoam plate.  The old friends are routinely there, like warm flannel pj pants..... cheesy potatoes, green bean casserole, baked beans... 

But it's the new loves cuddled up in their Tupperware that draw me like a hummingbird.  I love trying new foods.  I love trying at least one bite of things, just for the bragging rights....toad stir-fry, chicken hearts.  I think this side of me was born when my Dad dared his 10 year old Lori to eat a frog leg and 14 year old Lori to order Wild Boar off the menu.  It's especially fun if I'm not quite sure what it is!  (The only time this didn't work out so well was in Thailand....found out into the second bite that the sweet little dumplings in my soup weren't dumplings, but blood clots. My apologies, if you're snacking while reading...) 

The jello salads slowly brought in and deposited on the long tables by the grandmas are the best for adventures.  You can never quite tell what's lurking beneath until it's in your mouth....and even then you've gotta sleuth it out by texture and taste, or the occasional "pull it out of your mouth quick to get a peek at it" when it just won't give up the secret.  And they're so full of surprises...apparently there are no rules about what's allowed in a jello salad....fruit, marshmallows, vegetables... a skilled jello architect can make almost any combination seem right.  Those sneaky little jello salads show up on every table too, don't let the word "salad" in the name  fool ya.  I've seen those stinkers on the salad table, dessert table and everywhere in between. 

Another cool thing about the jello salads is that you know the person who brought it was really committed to the whole potluck thing.  This person isn't like me....someone who swings by the store on the way in for a "2 bags of chips = a salad" or even the person who remembers the night before and stays up late so they're offering qualifies as homemade.  Oh no...the jello salad requires so much more.  It's like a lady who needs to be thoughtfully courted....ingredients must be gathered... boiling, then chilling, then combining and mixing and chilling again.  Forethought, planning and time - jello can't be a one-stop cooking experience if you're gonna do it right....old lady style. 

And then there's the jello coup-de-grace...the beautifully, tupperwarely molded jello extravaganza.  Every time I put a slice of one of these wonders on my plate angels sing, sunbeams hit my plate and I'm amazed again at the ingenuity of  the modern woman in the kitchen.  Who would thought something so delicious could also be art.

My love for potluck jellos is so thick that it can't even be slowed by those rare jellos that disappoint.  Every now and then, a veteran jello maker gets over-eager, can't just rest in their past victories and dips their toe too far into jello schizophrenia....there are some things that just shouldn't be put in jello, my dears.  And then there's the newbies....this is why I don't do jello.  Looks so simple, but girls, it really should be left to the professionals.  Unless you've been mentored in the art be someone with more white hair than not, you might end up bringing a bowl full of that gritty stuff that gives jello a bad name.

Church potlucks are, by far, the best place to eat jello salad....I can eat it spontaneously and know that I'll be getting the good stuff, made by a white-haired professional.  I met a new jello today....a nicely molded slice... opaque, creamy yellow....full of...I'm not quite sure.  But it was yummy, yummy, yummy....

So, I guess, I'd have to say that it's the jello.  Yep, jello love is why I love church potlucks so much!  What a lovely way to spend a Sunday...


Hey...if that made you hungry for some yummy jello salad....you can head over to Ordinary Hero, help us with our adoption fundraiser...and buy some!!  We get 40% of the purchase price of every jello salad ordered and we're in another race for a $500 grant to the top 3 sellers this week! Ok...they don't really sell jello salad, you'll have to make your own or crash a church potluck....but they do sell tees with a message and donation kits to help hungry, needy kids in Africa...so click below and check it out!!

http://www.ordinaryherostore.org/
Choose "Scott & Lori Florida" from the affiliate pull-down menu when you check out!  Thanks!


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