Being in our nation’s capitol during the presidential inauguration is a pretty magical time. There are several festivities including the presidential swearing-in ceremony, inaugural address, inaugural parade, and numerous inaugural balls and galas honoring the elected President of the United States—Barack Obama.
I was down walking around on the National Mall yesterday looking at all of the preparations being put into place. Today, hundreds of thousands of people will flock to the U.S. Capitol hoping to catch a glimpse of the swearing-in ceremony. It’s a powerful feeling to be a part of the festivities in the town. Although I won’t be on the west lawn of the capitol and I won’t be attending the inaugural ball at the convention center—I will be glued to my television for the better portion of the day.
In light of the inauguration, I decided to make a special red, white, and blue themed dessert for this special day. This recipe includes Jell-O and although it’s still the middle of winter, I thought it would be fun to spice things up a little bit. You don’t need your oven for this recipe—in fact, you only need three ingredients! If you’ve got time for the Jell-O to firm up (preferably overnight) this recipe is a breeze to quickly pull together for a party.
Red, White and Blue Stained Glass Jell-O
Adapted from Laura Clark
2 boxes (6 ounces each) Jell-O in red and blue colors
1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
2 envelopes unflavored gelatin
For each color, dissolve one box of Jell-O in 2 cups of boiling water. Pour each color into an 8×8-inch square pan, and chill least 3 hours or overnight. After chilling the two pans of Jell-O, cut them into small blocks. Carefully mix the blocks in a 9×13-inch pan.
In a separate bowl, pour 2 envelopes of unflavored gelatin into 1/2 cup cold water. After the gelatin blooms, add 1 1/2 cups boiling water and dissolve. Add the can of condensed milk. Stir and let cool. Pour cooled milk mixture over Jell-O blocks in the 9×13-inch pan. Skim off any small bubbles that are created when you pour the condensed milk on the Jell-O pieces. Chill overnight or at least 3 hours until firm. Cut into blocks or shapes and serve.
Heather’s Helpful Hints
The tricky part of working with Jell-O can be simply removing it from the pan. Here’s a trick that’s sure to work every time. Grab a knife or rubber spatula, and work it around the edge of your pan to separate the edges from the pan. Next, fill your sink with hot tap water, and gently lower the pan into the water. Count slowly to 10. Now, put the pan on the counter, and place a cutting board on top of it. Hold the pan and cutting board together, and flip them over. The heat will have mostly detached the Jell-O from the pan, so wiggle or tap it gently to break the seal and let the Jell-O slide out.