Well, it’s done, the annual making of the green stuff for the holiday. I always put it off until the last day and then wonder why I didn’t do it sooner.
“I am not cooking this year,” I told my family. “I am buying a turkey breast and all the trimmings already prepared.” We were eating out, but the more I thought about it, the less it seemed like a good idea.
“Mom, can you at least make the green stuff,” asked my son? My tribe does not like cranberry sauce and always wants a Jello concoction we call “the green stuff” for the lack of a better name. It’s a tradition.
In spite of past cooking disasters, I agreed. I went to the grocery store yesterday and bought the ingredients, which I know by heart after making it for 50 years. Now get out of my way. You can watch, but do not make a peep until I’m done.
First, I opened everything and got it ready to use. I know what happens when I am elbow deep in sticky stuff and have to stop to open Jello.
Second, I whipped the whipping cream. “D*** that stuff takes a long time to get stiff.” Meanwhile, the mixer is spattering it on the wall, on the cabinet, on the cat and in my hair.
Third, I melted the marshmallows using the microwave. I used my largest dish, the one that barely fits when the door is closed.
Marshmallows swell when they get warm, so I stirred them down. I stirred them down again and again and again until I decide they are melted enough. A few lumps won’t matter. I can clean up the sticky stuff in the microwave later.
I try to mix in dry Jello but the marshmallows stick to the spatula, so I decide to use the mixer. The marshmallow climbs up the beaters and I have to add the juice from the pineapple to make the Jello disolve.
Finally, I added the cream cheese. “Oh no! It’s the wrong kind.” I must have picked up the low-fat kind by mistake. Well, too bad, it will have to do.
When mixed, I stirred in a can of crushed pineapple. One year I tried to use the mixer for this and the pineapple disappeared. I still don’t know where it went.
Last, I folded the green stuff into the whipping cream and it was done. ‘No, wait. That bowl is not big enough.” So, I found another bowl and poured it all into that. “Ugh! The mixer cord is in the marshmallow.”
I poured the mixture into a shallow plastic container. One year I used a deep one and all the pineapple all went to the bottom. I put it into the refrigerator and only spilled a little bit.
I am sticking to the floor, but that’s another tradition. All done, and it wasn’t nearly as bad this time as it sometimes is. The smoke alarm didn’t go off and I only cursed once.
After I put the sticky dishes the dishwasher, wipe the cabinet tops and backsplash, clean the marshmallow off the mixer, clean the microwave and mop the floor, I am finished except for taking a shower and washing my hair.
All I have to do now is complain to my friends on Facebook who will understand and click smiley faces. Others will probably make snide comments saying, “If you hate it so much, why do you do it?”
That’s a good question…
©Sheila Moss 2018