Jell-O Salad's Place at the Table

The meaning of a midcentury staple

By Jacqueline Kehoe

Last Thanksgiving, I watched my aunt grimace as my stepmom brought Jell-O salad to the dinner table. She visibly winced at its arrival, and her face fell hard when it landed with, “This was my dad’s absolute favorite recipe. It means so much to me.”

My family is divided in two: the half who dedicated their lives to seeming—at least—Chi…

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