The Dreaded Jell-O Mold, an Annual Thanksgiving Horror

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Jello has many uses.

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Yahoo! News asked writers from the Yahoo! Contributor Network to share their personal holiday tales and traditions. Below is a story from a contributor.

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I love my family. I truly do. Yet with all families there are disagreements and differences. These differences could range from sports rivalries to Team Edward or Team Jacob. Or it could involve politics, religion and other personal beliefs. The difference in my family involves taste. Real taste, as in flavors and texture rather than class or crass. Every year at Thanksgiving dinner, I am forced to suffer through my aunt's dreaded Jell-O Mold.

I know what you are probably thinking and I agree: Jell-O is awesome. I am well aware that it is delicious and jiggly and wonderful. But the mere fact that someone that I am related to can turn the wonder of Jell-O into something so grotesque and revolting is just as horrifying as the final product itself.

If you have ever seen the culinary marvels made with gelatin in the 1950s, then you only have a vague idea of my aunt's annual creation that lands in the middle of our feast. It is as if my aunt just trounced around the kitchen, letting ingredients fall from the pantry and refrigerator into the mold, and then tossed the whole thing in the fridge until Thanksgiving Day. Grains, fruits, vegetables, protein -- no ingredient is safe from becoming encased in a wobbly ring of horror.

Nor is my family safe from taste testing my aunt's Jell-O disasters. Luckily, I was an extremely picky eater as a child. I'm not anymore, but there's not reason for my family to know this as it leaves me generally unscathed from having to sample more than a spoonful of the mold. My relatives never seem to fare quite as well. Large, heaping portions of the Jell-O mold writhe onto my parents' and grandparents' plates with the help of my aunt. The Jell-O pieces shiver with anticipation next to the mashed potatoes, almost as if it were aware of the situation.

I generally try not to watch as the pieces get eaten or hidden under the now-ruined potatoes. Somehow, only one of my cousins ever manages to fully finish and digest the gelatinous wonder. She even seems to enjoy eating it every year, leading me to believe that the annual Thanksgiving Jell-O mold is a tradition I will have to endure for years to come.

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