What’s the most elaborate, complicated meal you’ve ever cooked? Was it a triumph for the ages, or a colossal fiasco? Give us the behind-the-scenes story (pictures are welcome, of course).


May I just share a funny story, and leave it at that?  Ok, thanks!

I was a new bride, enjoying having my own kitchen and trying out all sorts of recipes. Terry had invited his good friend Jerry for supper.  I made beef  stroganoff for the first time, which turned out just fine.

For dessert, I chose to make a very pretty Jello mold. This was back in the day when Jello was still a very popular item. I’d found a recipe to make in a crown mold like this: 

The little top piece was plain Jello, green if memory serves. The next layer was a mixture of cream cheese and green jello, and the bottom layer was more green jello with fruit mixed in. This had to be done in parts, of course, letting each layer gel before adding the next. The trick, I have since learned, is to get the timing exactly right 🙂

When the time came, I carefully turned the mold upside down on my serving plate.  Before that, I had set it open-side up in lukewarm water for just a few seconds, to loosen it from the mold so the mold would lift off and reveal a sparkling  work of culinary magic.

It was beautiful. The serving plate sat next to the sink, which was still full of lukewarm water.  I was so proud of my work, feeling pretty cocky about having it turn out so well.  I lifted the plate, and the little piece on the top of the mold jiggled. . .. . .slid. . . . . plopped ingloriously into the sink of warm water, melting on contact.

I set the plate down, foolishly trying to save the glob in the sink, and knocked the plate into the sink.

Sigh. All that work, all down the drain.  Terry and his friend didn’t even try to contain their mirth as i scrabbled in the water trying to salvage at least one little bite of the beautiful–melted–finale to my meal.

The Jello went down the drain. The story lives on in our family history.



10 thoughts on “Flop!

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