Jell-O On A Boat

Hello lovely readers! I've recently returned from a glorious four night cruise to Mexico with my dear friend Catherine. We wanted a vacation that required minimal effort and provided lots of sun. Bingo. Cruises aren't necessarily known for the quality of their food but boy did they deliver in the quantity department. I think I'm still full.

Now, where there are buffets, there is usually Jell-O - and the Carnival Cruise buffets did not disappoint. Below is a tour of our ship's gelatin-based offerings.

Jell-O On A Boat

Clearly labeled so there's no mistaking it for anything else.

Although I do have my doubts that these were made with name-brand Jell-O. They were room temperature and lacking in the flavor department. I give them a C.

This was a Mango Mousse that had so much gelatin and so little flavor that I could only choke down one bite. Contrary to what you may have been lead to believe by my ramblings on this blog, the gelatin ratio in a dessert is not directly proportional to how tasty it is. Catherine was able to literally peel the top layer off this dessert. That's gross. I give this an F.

The pink marshmallows looked pretty sad - even worse than my first attempt at homemade marshmallow wrangling. They didn't taste awful but I didn't go back for a second bite. I give them a D.

The "yellow" and "red" jellies sure looked nice and they had a good texture and consistency. They were lacking, however, any discernible flavor profile. I give them a C+. The plus is because (after spending all morning in the sun and a few piña coladas) you can add two candied walnut crumbs for eyes and make this:

Ah, the sea.

Happy Molding!

Sugar, Sugar

Happy Valentine's Day, dear blog readers! I hope you're spending today with a loved one - romantic or otherwise. It's a very sweet holiday but certainly not worth feeling lonely or sad over - not when there are pink marshmallows to be enjoyed!

For these, I used my usual marshmallow recipe and added red food coloring towards the end. I also used an 8x8 dish to mold these so they came out a bit thicker than the ones I made for my holiday party. They were a little more difficult to tackle with the pizza cutter but if you roll up your sleeves and show that marshmallow who's boss, you'll manage just fine.

After slicing and dusting with powered sugar, I heated up dark chocolate to spoon on the top of each one.

This was my chance to finally break out the most adorable sprinkles I've ever seen. Seriously. Just tell me those aren't the cutest tiny hearts you've ever seen.

The best part of being an adult is that it's perfectly acceptable to have three of these for dinner. Especially because no one was around to judge me. Except the cat. But her nickname is "little miss piggy" so I'm sure she was cheering me on.

Anyway, hope you're having a great day. And if you're not, here's what the Oatmeal has to say on the subject. God bless him. Just remember that if sexy rumpus isn't an option, pink marshmallows and a Manhattan will do a pinch.

Happy Molding!

Oh, Jell-O...

I came across this retro Jell-O advertisement while combing the internet for entertaining blog fodder. The only part of the ad that this Women's Studies major doesn't take issue with is the line: "actually, Jell-O is everybody's best friend." Incredibly sexist advertising aside, that's hard to disagree with.

Happy Molding!

Gelatin: Not just for molding

So one of the fun features of WordPress is that I can see what search engine queries lead people to my blog. Pretty nifty right? Well, last week someone clicked through to my blog after searching "how much knox gelatin is a safe amount to take in a day." What.

After some internet research of my own I found this.

So I guess it makes sense since gelatin is good for your nails but I imagine this is like mixing up some Orange Jell-O and drinking it before it sets. In fact, that's probably exactly what it's like.


Also, my birthday is coming up - who's getting me this?

International Women's Day - Jello Mold Edition

Happy International Women's Day everyone! I'm sorry I don't have a festive jello mold to share in honor of the day but I did find a mold that I must purchase for next year.

WARNING: If you are offended by the site of baking pans shaped like lady parts do not click the link.

Truth be told it's the only "woman symbol" mold I could find online. It just happens to come with an anatomically correct bonus mold. The mold is only 1/2 inch deep so not ideal for jello but for $3.69 I might just need to take a chance...

Happy molding!


I like my drinking vessels glass, athankyouverymuch...

Thanks to not one, but TWO tipsters (thanks Paige and Becca!), I present to you: Jelloware Edible Cups.

According to this post from TheKitchn these edible cups are made from the vegan jello alternative, agar agar, and can apparently be flavored to accent your cocktail!

I will confess that I haven't used agar agar before but am a little hesitant as it reminds me of high school science class...

Not sure I can get on board with this gelatin creation... They do look awfully festive though!

What do you think, friends??

Side Salad Success!

I've been fretting about the great Onion Juice search and I'm sure you've all been waiting with bated (onion) breath for the Sea Dream Salad post. Thanks to some Googling on my lunch break I came across a handy food substitutions list and much to my surprise Onion Juice was on it! It seems I'm not the only one with a desperate need for eau de onion who is unable to find it in a local store and/or unwilling to shell out $7.24 (plus shipping!) on eBay (!!?) for a 2 oz. bottle of the stuff.

Onion Juice 2 tbsp 3/4 tsp instant minced onion OR 3/4 tsp onion flakes

Looks like my lunch buddies will be taste testing the Sea Dream Salad tomorrow!

Not just for when you're sick...

But also pretty tasty when you are! I came down with the stomach flu late Sunday night and since then, have been subsisting on saltine crackers and this delightfully green jello:

I just follow the directions on the box of Lime Jell-O (stir in 2 cups boiling water, then 2 cups cold water. refrigerate until firm) and eat it out of the bowl. Simple and soothing for your tummy!

Don't forget to vote for the jello side salad I'll be whipping up this weekend...

Jello As A Side Salad

The year was 1975 and my dad was having dinner at my mom's parent's house for the first time. He noticed that everyone had a plate of jello (nestled in a bed of lettuce) next to their dinner plate. He was almost done with his meal when Grandma Marjorie asked why he wasn't eating his salad. Salad? Indeed, what my dad had assumed to be dessert was actually a jello salad intended to be eaten with the main course. My dad will eat just about anything that's not "wiggling on his plate" so he quickly won Marjorie over with his fearless appetite for jello side salad. The rest is history! This may be difficult for some people to get behind and I'll admit I've only ever served fruit-based jello but I'm looking forward to trying my hand at some side salads. My Jell-O recipe book from 1930 has several tasty suggestions:

Just for fun I've put together a poll so my readers can decide which recipe I'll try (and of course blog about!) next:

[polldaddy poll=4202427]

Place your vote by midnight on Thursday December 9 and check back next week for the full write-up.

Why Hello, Jell-O...

Welcome to Breaking the Mold blog! My hope is to entertain (and inspire!) while chronicling my adventures (and inevitable misadventures) in gelatin molding.

I've always loved jello (I have my Midwestern grandparents to blame for that) and recently inherited my grandmother's jello molds and extensive jello recipe collection. I've also been inspired by the various jello recipe booklets from the 1930's that I've collected and look forward to sharing my experiments with such tantalizing treats as: Chicken Mousse, Sea Dream Salad, and Prune Perfection!

I'm also a firm believer in "boozy jello" and will be including recipes for some favorites from that category as well. These are not your college roommate's jello shots. You have been warned.

Many thanks to those who helped me come up with the blog title (shout out to Alexa) as well as the yet-to-be used post titles (Paige, Jenny, Courtney, Jessamyn & Alexa).

Special thanks and super shout out to my blog consultant, sometimes photographer, and dear friend Paige. Thanks lady, you rock!

On with the show!