Nana Recipe Wednesday–Strawberry-Banana Jello Mold with Sour Cream

by Sarah on December 8, 2010

Ha! Just snuck this one in under the wire. It’s still Wednesday, y’all!

We’re having ourselves a love fest over here, because love Jell-o or hate it, everyone loves this Jell-o mold.  I refuse to call it a salad.

I call it the ‘favorite’ but I could also call this the ‘holiday’ Jell-o, because we always have to have it for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners.  I don’t know why.  We just do.  It makes no sense really, to have this red fruity stuff sitting next to your mashed potatoes, but it just seems to be the way things are done—and dadgumit, who am I to mess with Tradition?  My own dear father would likely faint if I were to stray from Nana’s Traditional Holiday Menu.

On Thanksgiving this year, I got to make The Jell-o with this little cutie.  She’s growing up right before your eyes, readers!  Ain’t she just a doll?  She takes after me.

The Jell-o is made with lots of fruit.  None of which is in season, really.  Use frozen strawberries, a couple of bananas, and a can of crushed pineapple (drained).  It’s fine.  Mash up the banana and thawed strawberries.

Dump all the fruit in a bowl, add the Jell-o and some boiling water.  Stir till it all dissolves.

Fill the mold halfway and refrigerate till it sets.  Just leave the other half on the counter so it doesn’t set.

Spread a layer of sour cream (I know!  Weird!) about 1/2″ thick all over the set Jell-o.

Then pour the rest of the liquid Jell-o on top.  Chill till it’s all set.

Un-mold the thing by dipping it (Jell-o side up, of course) into warm water so that it loosens.  Put a plate on top and quickly flip it over.

Can you tell this is from a different day?  I forgot both to

a) Eat any Jell-o on Thanksgiving; and

b)  Take any photos of the un-molded Jell-o; PLUS

c)  Got the flu, and Jell-o sounded really good.

I instantly thought of this Jell-o when I felt sickly because, without fail, my father likes to regale us with the story of how this Jell-o saved him from sure peril.  A long, long time ago, in a city far away, a young skinny man (my father) got MONO or mumps or some other grizzly sickness where he couldn’t bear to eat anything.  He was NEARLY STARVING when this very same Jell-o was made for him and it SAVED HIS LIFE.  Or so he says.  He later walked to school in the snow for 5 miles uphill.

Anyway, this Jell-o really is good.  Even if you are an avowed Jell-o hater, or if you’ve never given it a try–because maybe you grew up somewhere more civilized than mid-century middle America… somewhere with unpasteurized stinky cheeses and questionable cured meats…….*sigh*….

Give it a shot, you might even end up loving it like we do.

Nana Recipe Wednesday–Favorite Strawberry Jell-O


  • 2 small or 1 large box strawberry or strawberry-banana Jell-O
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 bananas, mashed
  • 1-13 oz. can crushed pineapple, drained
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 bag frozen strawberries, thawed and mashed slightly


  • Dissolve Jell-O in the boiling water. Add the berries and stir occasionally until fully thawed. Add the pineapple and banana. Pour half of mixture into mold. Chill until firm. Spread the sour cream over chilled Jell-O. Pour remaining mixture carefully over the sour cream and chill until fully set.

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