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Sunday, February 21, 2010

Fruity Tapioca Fluff - refreshing for a buffet...


Here’s a light, fruity salad that’s really inviting on a buffet table.  You can make it an entirely different salad by changing the jello flavor, as well as the fruit you add.  A quick stir just once before serving is all it takes for it to hold beautifully for several hours.  Not a fan of tapioca?  Don’t worry, you won’t even see it.


My family really loves jello - we ARE in Utah, you know...  Of course our favorite flavor is the only one that is hard to locate:  Apricot.  Go figure!  I’ve always been able to locate it at Walmart for some reason, and I’m glad.  It’s not quite orange, and not quite peach - but a nice “crossover” flavor.

I’ve had salads similar to this one on several occasions, but I noticed that people have pretty strong opinions about tapioca when it’s visible.  There’s enough texture here that you won’t even know it’s in the salad, but it’s an important ingredient because it helps hold the texture for a long time.  I guess you could say tapioca gets the award for “Best Supporting Ingredient” in a lot of my recipes.  

I found a “reference” recipe for this salad on tasteofhome.com.  (that’s my term for any recipe that gives me a starting place to come up with my own creation.) Taste of Home calls it “Orange Tapioca Salad”.  This is where I started swapping ingredients.  

I found that you need to give this a quick stir just before serving to bring the hidden fruits out of hiding.  Otherwise, it just looks like a flat bowl of melted “creamsicle”...  Kids enjoy this salad - much like the salad we call “Green Slime” (you know the one - cottage cheese, lime jello, crushed pineapple, and cool whip - another Utah favorite)  Keep in mind that it serves an army - great for big family meals.


For this recipe and a photo tutorial, go to:


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