This marshmallow laden Holiday Fruit Salad has been part of our family holidays for decades. In fact, this very recipe originated from my great-grandmother, a sweet petite Irish woman (who barely hit 4 feet, 8 inches) who loved to sip a glass of wine and spin a tale.
The Origin of this Holiday Fruit Salad
My great-grandmother left this world when I was in 3rd grade at age 92…but she has lived on through her stories, which were well known to be a mix of fact and fiction, and her fabulous recipes. My mom and her sister would stop by Dama’s house for visits after school often to sample a loaf of her purple bread…baked with whole walnuts which provided the distinctive color. Practicing her kneading technique on Dama’s fleshy arms was one of my mom’s favorite memories of her grandmother. Dama’s roast mallards, brandied peaches, spicy pickles and relishes and even her young suckling pig complete with a red apple in its mouth were some of the legendary creations from her kitchen. One of her mottoes was, “It’s enough to feed a starving man,” which was repeated due to the queries of why there was a bowl with just a few peas along with a mish mash of other leftovers stored in the ice box. She and Dappy (my great-grandfather) lived near a railroad line and Dama wanted to be prepared with provisions in case a beggar should come knocking on her door. This treasured recipe from Dama for 24 hour salad became part of our holiday tradition and appeared on our dining room table for Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter celebrations.
Now Enjoyed by a 4th Generation
There is now a 4th generation making this salad for special occasions. I’m certain my oldest, Tom, will have his wife (someday, no pressure, Tom) make this for him. He considers it breakfast food, too…fruit, eggs, dairy…sure, it works! My mom’s version varied from Dama’s recipe Which called for 2 whole eggs, 1/2 can pineapple, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 pound marshmallows, 1/2 pint of whipping cream, juice of one lemon, 1/2 pound green grapes and a pinch of salt. It has definitely morphed through the years. Dama’s directions were pre-refrigerators, “Let stand in a cold place 24 hours before serving.” My splattered recipe card mentioned you can use vinegar or lemon juice and the addition of pineapple juice was also scrawled in the margins as an afterthought. No matter what fruits or acids you choose to use, I hope this lovely salad graces your table one day soon.
I picked up a super sweet Del Monte Gold® pineapple at the market to use in this fruit salad…so incredibly juicy! The kind folks at Del Monte® had sent me a very cool Vacu Vin spiral slicer which I quickly put to use. By the way, have you heard about the amazing contest over on the Del Monte® Fresh Produce facebook page? Their pirate-themed sweepstakes called “Gold for Gold” runs through November 29. 15 lucky winners will receive an ounce of 24 carat gold plus there is a grand prize of a whopping pound of gold!!! Such a spectacular prize. To enter, head over to their contest page. Or just look for the specially tagged Del Monte Gold® whole pineapples or fresh cut chunks and spears. You can scan the QR code on the packaging and enter right on your phone! And if you’d like your own Pineapple Slicer (plus a bonus compass to help you find that pot of treasure), just follow the Rafflecopter prompts below.
- 3 egg yolks
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons pineapple juice
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 tablespoon butter
- dash of salt
- 1 or 2 cans Royal Anne cherries, drained
- 2 cups pineapple chunks, Del Monte Gold preferred
- 1 large can mandarin oranges, drained
- 1 can pear chunks
- 2 bananas, sliced
- 1-2 cups grapes, sliced
- 2 bananas, peeled and sliced
- 2 cups marshmallows, cut in half
- 1 cup heavy cream
- In a double boiler, whisk egg yolks, lemon and pineapple juices, sugar, butter and salt till mixture thickens. Set aside to cool.
- When sauce is cooled, put fruit and marshmallows in a large bowl. Whip cream and add cream and sauce to fruit. Toss gently to coat and refrigerate overnight.
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Disclosure: Del Monte® sent me two pineapple slicers and compasses to help promote their sweepstakes. I was not compensated for writing this post and all thoughts and opinions are mine alone.