Well, we are bringing you a slight change from our regularly scheduled program. This week, we take on a dare. Not a dare from a reader, or even from taunting or disbelieving family members. Nope, this week the dare comes from CNN.
Maybe not CNN as a whole, but definitely the Eatocracy blog. Confident that daredevils and glory-grasping bloggers everywhere will hop on the bandwagon, Eatocracy editor Kat Kinsman has laid down an open challenge in the form of a salad. To be exact, an Aspic Supper Salad from the Silent Hostess Treasure book, circa 1930.
“As long as we can keep finding fun, festive vintage recipes, once a week we’ll post one and double-dog-dare our readers to blog about their efforts – with snapshots of the final product,” Kinsman boasts.
Well, that’s the kind of thing that Tom and I just can’t let go unanswered.
A little shredded cabbage in lemon gelatin is no problem for us.
And, I must confess, the temptation to show off was just too great.
And who could say “no” to a few extra readers?
Not me. Nope, not me.
So, this fun aspic salad looks like it is a copycat of the classic Knox “Perfection Salad”, which was published by Knox in 1905.
It came from a contest, and was submitted by Mrs. John Cooke who won a sewing machine with her bit of classic culinary magic.
Perfection Salad was originally made with plain gelatin and is known for its base of cabbage.
Later recipes substituted lemon or lime jello, and various veggies including canned sauerkraut. Ick.
This version is great because it uses FRESH cabbage.
And there are no onions. Onions + sweet gelatin = Really Disgusting! Always. Always. No exceptions. No matter how much vinegar you add.
The lunchmeat we decided to go with was all local, Koegel’s brand. Braunschweiger, of course, then olive loaf and macaroni and cheese loaf.
Yep, I said macaroni and cheese loaf!
Not sure what prompted me to use my fish mold for the aspic, but I must say I was very happy with the results. Or, the results after I dressed it up a bit.
Meet punk rock aspic salad fish.
In my head I had originally planned a stunning underwater display with clever little sea creatures and plants made of lunchmeat and deviled eggs, but after I unmolded my fish I decided he just wasn’t fishy looking enough for me.
So I decided he needed a bigger fin. Then a bigger tail. Then some bubbles. Suddenly he took up the whole plate and took on a punk rock look. I chucked the undersea wonderland idea and went with it. It was really the only thing to do.
The punk rock fish nose. Featuring peppers, carrots, celery and cabbage, trapped forever. Like flies in amber.
Well, maybe not forever. Trapped just long enough for Tom to dig in.
“Eh. Tastes pretty good. Like salad in Jello.”
The Verdict: Good. Tasted like sweet and sour coleslaw, except the dressing was jelled. Which was a little odd, but not unpleasant. Behind Sunshine Salad, probably my favorite non-fruit gelatin.
Eatocracy bandwagon, here we come.