Frozen (Recipe: Frozen Fruit Salad)
Heat and humidity create an affinity for all versions of frozen food: ice cream, popsicles, ice box pies, sherbet. You don’t need to look far to find a Southerner who has a grand tale to share about how Grandpa used to drag out his hand cranked ice cream freezer and the grandkids would have to share in turning and turning and turning the crank for hours until the sweet creamy concoction assimilated into the frozen food kingdom. Scooped into to Dixie cups, it was eaten as quickly as possible, slowing down slightly when brain freeze got a hold of you. The best advice is to let the ice cream cure in the ice cream freezer for a period of time after it’s gotten thick before eating. In all my born years, I’ve never known a soul who waited one second to eat ice cream past the time it was thick enough to spoon. People that are about to burn slap up don’t wait for ice cream to cure before they start gobbling it down.
Frozen Fruit Salads rank pretty high in popularity in the frozen food kingdom. Generations have enjoyed them while sweltering in the oppressive heat of Southern summers. They’re most commonly poured into a baking sheet and then sliced into squares before serving. Scooping them into baking cups serves two purposes. First, it creates an individual serving so slicing isn’t required. Secondly, the papers form cute little ridges on the side of each salad. It looks like you went to a lot of effort when really all you did is throw an ice cream scoop full of the salad into a baking cup. You must remember to move the paper baking paper before serving so as not to blow your cover.
If you opt for fresh fruit instead of canned, cook the fruit in simple syrup just until soft. The type of fruit used may vary according to seasonal availability. I would stay away from bananas which don’t always freeze well.
Frozen Fruit Salad
Peaches, cherries, grapes, pears and pineapple, with some help from marshmallows, gang up on cream cheese and fresh whipped cream to form a most pleasant summer treat.
Instead of portioning out individual servings in paper baking cups, the entire fruit salad may be spread in a 9X11 pan and frozen. It might need to thaw slightly before slicing. Serve while still frozen. If using canned peaches, I prefer to get sliced peaches and then dice them into about 1 inch cubes. I find canned diced peaches too soft.
8 ounce cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup confectioners sugar
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 cup maraschino cherries, drained
1 cup crushed pineapple, drained
30 ounces can fruit cocktail, drained
8 ounce can peaches, diced and drained
2 1/2 cups miniature marshmallow
1/2 cup whipping cream
Whip softened cream cheese and powdered sugar. Blend in mayonnaise. When well blended, add flavorings. Fold in drained fruits and marshmallows.
Whip cream until stiff peaks form. Gently fold in. Don’t stir. I put in a couple of drops of red food coloring to tint it pink. Scoop into paper baking cups. Freeze overnight. Remove paper baking cups before serving.
You might also enjoy:
Banana Split Cake
Lemon Fruit Dip