Showing posts with label tomato aspic. Show all posts
Showing posts with label tomato aspic. Show all posts

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Tomato Aspic

Please welcome returning guest blogger Barb Goffman who brings a new Thanksgiving recipe.

Let’s be honest. There are two kinds of Thanksgiving. There’s the one held by folks who love their families, who are sad being apart, and for whom Thanksgiving is a joyous time to come together and share food and happiness.

Then there’s the rest of us. The ones who think fondly of the bird and the day off from work and who try to put out of our minds the annoying aunt who always shares embarrassing stories and the uncle who gets drunk and tries to feel up every woman in the room.

Yes, Thanksgiving can be a crapshoot. No one knows that better than Felicity, the main character in my story “Murder a la Mode,” in the new anthology The Killer Wore Cranberry: A Second Helping, published by Untreed Reads Publishing. Felicity is a good southern woman. She’s in her early twenties. Married a couple years. And now, to her horror, she’s spending Thanksgiving with her husband’s family—at a nudist colony.

Between averting her eyes, getting uncomfortable hugs, and avoiding the stare of lecherous Great-Uncle Lester, the afternoon is bad enough. And that’s before someone dies. There’s probably not a person reading this who hasn’t dreamed of killing someone during Thanksgiving dinner. But what happens when it actually occurs? You’ll have to read the story to find out.

In addition to reading and laughing your way through Thanksgiving, I have one more coping suggestion: comfort food (much better than murder). Here’s a recipe for tomato aspic, which is a retro southern side dish that Felicity would like. This recipe comes courtesy of Mary Stuart Andrews, mother of author Donna Andrews. “We always had it for Thanksgiving,” Donna said. “I was a fussy eater, and this was one of the things I would eat.”

Tomato Aspic

1 tablespoon unflavored gelatin
2 cups tomato juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons catsup
1 teaspoon meat sauce (Worcestershire, A-1)
1 tablespoon minced onion (optional)
1/2 cup chopped celery


Soften the gelatin in a half-cup of the cold tomato juice for five minutes.

Heat the salt, catsup, meat sauce, and remaining tomato juice to boiling.

Remove from heat and stir in the gelatin/juice mixture.

Add celery (and onion, if used).

Chill in the refrigerator until it starts to congeal. (Takes about 30 minutes.)

Stir and pour into a serving bowl. (Hint: Use a clean, non-greasy spoon for the stirring so not to slow down the congealing process).

Chill in the refrigerator until firm. (Minimum time to reach firmness is two hours. Overnight is best.)

Makes six servings.

I hope you enjoy the recipe. I also hope you’ll share your stories about interesting places you’ve spent Thanksgiving. Can anyone top Felicity’s nudist colony?

Happy Thanksgiving!

“Murder a la Mode” is one of seventeen stories in the new anthology The Killer Wore Cranberry: A Second Helping, published by Untreed Reads Publishing. All the stories in the book are funny and involve Thanksgiving. This anthology is a follow-up to one I wrote about here on Mystery Lovers Kitchen two years ago, simply called The Killer Wore Cranberry. That book contained eight humorous Thanksgiving food tales. Both books are published solely in electronic format and are available at all the usual online outlets, as well as directly from the publisher, at And until the end of the month, if you buy right from the publisher and use code THANKSGIVING at check-out, you’ll get 30 percent off.
Barb Goffman's published fiction has all been in the crime short-story realm. Her stories mostly focus on families, because the people you know best are the ones you'll most likely want to kill. Barb has been nominated for the Agatha Award four times and for the Anthony and the Macavity awards once each. In her spare time, Barb serves as a co-coordinating editor of the Chesapeake Crimes series (Wildside Press) and as program chair of the Malice Domestic mystery convention. She's an avid reader and a doting mom of a very cute dog. You can learn more about her at and you can like her on Facebook.