As Sarasota was developing during the early 1900’s, so were some favorite foods. The most popular foods were Deviled Eggs, Pineapple Upside Down Cake, Jell-O Salad Molds, Johnny Cakes (a flat cornmeal cake), Tomato Soup Cake, and Ambrosia Fruit Salad, just to name a few.
Ambrosia was known as the food of the Greek Gods according to ancient Greek mythology. While many people in the United States claim the recipe was originally from the South because of the abundance of oranges, several Northern states from Kansas to Rhode Island have a history of ambrosia recipes too.
The original recipe consisted of fresh orange slices, fresh grated coconut, and sugar. Over the years the recipe varied with whipped cream, mini marshmallows, pineapple, mandarin oranges, and nuts. Ambrosia is a traditional Christmas dish; however, it is also a great refreshing summer picnic salad. The old saying that you do not discuss politics or religion at dinner goes the same about debating who owns the original ambrosia recipe and the ingredients. December 12th is National Ambrosia Day.
1 tub (8 oz.) COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, thawed
2 cans (11 oz. each) mandarin oranges, drained
1 can (20 oz.) crushed pineapple in juice, drained
3 cups JET-PUFFED miniature marshmallows
2 cups BAKER’S ANGEL FLAKE coconut
Spread COOL WHIP onto the bottom and up the sides of a 2 ½ qt. bowl.
Combine remaining ingredients and fill in the center of the bowl.