Pickled Mushrooms, Jell-O Dessert, Fruitcake and Divinity Candy Recipes

The invention of Jell-O and the popularity of Jell-O recipes changed the way we look at dessert. We also have you covered with Pickled Mushrooms recipes and more.

| July/August 2012

  • Lemon Poke Cake Recipe
    Originally only four flavors of Jell-O were offered: orange, lemon, strawberry and raspberry. Currently, there are 40 flavors of powdered Jell-O on the market.
    Lori Dunn
  • Holiday Fruitcake Recipe
    Ressurect a Quick and Easy Fruitcake Recipe found on a 1960s None Such Mincemeat booklet.
    iStockphoto.com/Anthony Boulton
  • Divinity Candy Recipe
    Never Fail Divinity Candy tastes like a candy kiss from heaven.
    Lori Dunn
  • Marinated Mushrooms
    Try a Pickled Mushroom Recipe seasoned with onions and spices.
    Fotolia/Africa Studio

  • Lemon Poke Cake Recipe
  • Holiday Fruitcake Recipe
  • Divinity Candy Recipe
  • Marinated Mushrooms

Until the 1890s, gelatine or gelatin — a substance made from the collagen in animal skin and bones — was odorless, colorless and tasteless. Along came carpenter and cough remedy maker Pearle B. Wait from LeRoy, New York. His 1897 experiments added fruit flavoring to the gelatin to make a dessert his wife, May, named Jell-O. And the rest is history. (Keep reading for Jell-O Dessert recipes and some other great recipes you'll want to try.)  

Wait sold his formula to another LeRoy resident, Orator Frank Woodward, known as O.F., for the tidy sum of $450. Woodward began manufacturing Jell-O in 1899, with the help of Andrew Nico of Lyons, New York. In a moment of gloom — sales had been abysmal — Woodward offered the Jell-O formula to Nico for a mere $35. Before the deal could go through, however, an advertising campaign took root and sales began to skyrocket.

Woodward’s Genesee Pure Food Co. first used the name “Jell-O” in 1900. Postum bought the company in 1925, which became General Foods in 1927. Another ad campaign in the 1930s spelled out “J-E-L-L-O” as a sponsorship of the Jack Benny radio show. And the 1950s saw the popularity soar for molded gelatin salads, with sales booming.

The 1960s found Jell-O promoted as a light dessert, with the advertising slogan, “There’s always room for Jell-O.” In 1989, General Foods merged with Kraft Foods.



Originally only four flavors of Jell-O were offered: orange, lemon, strawberry and raspberry. Lime joined the group in 1930. Currently, 40 flavors of powdered Jell-O are on the market along with 11 prepared Jell-O gelatin snack combinations, 57 pudding products and eight NoBake desserts.

You can learn more about Jell-O and its history at the Jell-O Gallery, a museum on Main Street in LeRoy, which now has a population of about 7,600. 






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