Yes, the day has come for the much-requested Fruit Pizza! And we're puttin' it on JELLO. Say whaaaaaat?!? We don't know how to be normal here at Eat The Pizza. What can we say? We're pizza freaks and food adventurers. Jello pizza crust, coconut whipped cream sauce, fresh and fruity toppings, comin' atcha.
Try out the recipe, why don’t ya? If you’re here, you must already like pizza. If you think you don’t like Jello, you should give it another try—in this Jello Fruit PIZZA. We highly recommend it. And we recommend that you buy fruit that’s in season (a.k.a. won’t be sour)... And we recommend that, first, you check out this small collection of the many interesting, jiggly moments in Jello's history. For Your Enjoyment:
Jello Is Good to the Bone
The the powdered stuff that comes in a packet of Jell-O (along with the deliciously sugary flavorings) is called gelatin. And, we gotta say, it's pretty awesome—and equally weird. Gelatin is a protein that’s produced from collagen, a gelatinous substance that’s extracted from animal bones by boiling them!
On its own, plain ‘ol gelatin is actually entirely flavorless, odorless, and colorless when mixed with liquid. Without all those sugary flavorings, it’s been said to be pretty gross… But, despite the weirdness of how it’s made, we have gelatin to thank for Jello’s craveable, jiggleable texture. And, BONUS: gelatin itself is PURE PROTEIN! So, Jello Freaks, rest assured: Jello IS indeed a healthy snack that wont wreck your New Year's resolutions. Eat, slurp, and be merry.
Pinkies Out, It's Jello Time
The word “gelatine” traces all the way back to the Latin word “gelatus,” meaning “jellied, froze.” Or, it may trace back to the Latin word “gelare,” meaning “to congeal,” or “to freeze.” (We don’t know which—we came across both on the internet. Personally, we like “congeal-O.”) And, gelatin itself goes waaay back in time—all the way to the Ancient Egyptians. In a pharaoh’s tomb, archaeologists found traces of gelatin used as glue! (It is gelatinous, after all.) Although, we prefer imagining the pharaoh requested Jello ingredients To-Go for his trip into the afterlife.
Nowadays, we’ve got fancy machines that make it easy to keep Jello stocked on grocery store shelves. But, for most of history, Jello (more generally, gelatin) has been a treat reserved for the rich and royal—because no one else could afford it! Jello connoisseurs of the Victorian spent hours (and even days) boiling cow and pig hooves to extract the gelatin. But, then there was the straining, rendering, clarifying, and then molding gelatin into extravagant shapes for dessert. And, of course, this all required paying a highly-skilled and competent kitchen staff to run the show. Truly, Jello was as much a delicacy as it was (& still is) delicate and jiggly.
Let Them Eat Jello
In 1845, Peter Cooper—inventor of the first American-built steam locomotive (the Tom Thumb)—brought Jello to the common people. (Sort of. ) Although he had his heart set on creating a gelatin-based powdered glue, he stumbled upon a scientific miracle instead. Cooper patented the first gelatin dessert powder that ONLY required the addition of hot water to gelatinize! It was creatively named, “Portable Gelatin,” and then not much else was done with it…for 50 years.
Turns out that whole flavorless-odorless-colorless thing made Portable Gelatin neither tasty nor pretty. And yucky, ugly Jello was pretty hard to market. But, after decades, Cooper finally busted a move and sold his patent. Pearle Bixby Wait and his wife May had been struggling to make it in the cough syrup business when they snagged Cooper’s patent for powdered gelatin. Their syrup-making experience—combined with May’s love of cooking and dessert—made them the ideal duo to make powdered gelatin palatable.
In 1897, the two cough-syrup duds quickly became Jello connoisseurs. The Wait’s concocted sugary syrups that transformed the tasteless gelatin into strawberry-, raspberry-, lemon-, and orange-flavored delights. Turns out, the secret to cracking the Jello code was simple: 12% gelatin, 88% sugar! They combined “gelatin” and “jelly,” tacked on an “O” at the end for good measure, and trademarked “Jell-O.” Sadly, the Wait’s didn’t know much about business, had to sell their formula for just $450, and their jiggly treat didn’t make it big until the 1900s, when it became “America’s Favorite Dessert.”
J-E-L-L-O Is So C-O-O-L
Here’s a random Jello tidbit for ya:
Have you ever heard the Mormon Corridor region of Utah referred to as the “Jell-O Belt?” That’s because, in 2001, Salt Lake City had the highest per capita Jell-O consumption of anywhere in the country!
Jell-O is SO popular in the region and among members of the Mormon church, a Utah State Representative—Leonard M. Blackham—needed to immortalize the wiggly dessert. In 2001, he introduced State Resolution 5, known as “Resolution Urging Jell-O Recognition.” With only two mere naysayers in the vote, the resolution passed and Jell-O became the Official State Snack Food of Utah.
Get To Jigglin' In Your Kitchen
Clearly, we love pizza. But sometimes you’ve gotta think outside the pizza box! Sure, fruit pizza is cool, it used to be edgy back in the day. Now it’s time to elevate—ditch the cookie crust, plop that fruit pizza on a jiggly, wiggly slab o’ Jello!
Jello Fruit Pizza Ingredients:
Jello Pizza Crust:
- 2 cups freshly-squeezed organic orange juice (~4-6 medium oranges)
- 2 Tbsp grass-fed gelatin
Shout out to Oh, The Things We’ll Make for inspiring this recipe!
Jello Pizza Toppings:
- 1 can full-fat coconut whipped cream, refrigerated
- strawberries, thinly sliced
- kiwi, peeled & sliced
- mango, cubed
- any fruits you prefer!
To Make Jello Pizza Crust:
- Wash oranges and cut in half. Use a manual juicer to squeeze oranges until you have at least 2 cups of juice. Or, if you don’t have an manual juicer, you can place a fine mesh strainer over a measuring cup or mixing bowl and squeeze out the juice.
- Pour juice into saucepan. Sprinkle gelatin across the surface of the orange juice. (This is called "blooming"... basically it's just gonna prevent the jello from getting lumpy.)
- Using a fork or SILICONE whisk, stir the mixture and let it sit for about 2-3 minutes.
- Heat the gelatin-and-juice mixture over medium heat until gelatin is dissolved, about 5-7 minutes, stirring continuously.
- Line a round cake pan with plastic wrap. Remove saucepan from heat and immediately pour mixture into lined cake pan lined.
- Place in the refrigerator and chill for at least 3-4 hours, or until completely set.
To Assemble Fruit Jello Pizza:
- Place can of coconut cream in the fridge. Let it sit for a few hours so the liquid and cream can separate. Don't turn the can over or shake it!
- Once Jello crust is set and you’re ready to assemble, remove can of coconut cream from fridge. (Try to keep it still, and don’t shake it or turn it upside down!)
- Carefully open can, pour off separated liquid, and transfer remaining coconut cream to a mixing bowl.
- Beat coconut cream with a hand mixer until whipped up light and fluffy.
- Spread coconut whipped cream gently across the surface of your Jello crust. Layer fresh fruit on top.
- Now slice it on up and Eat The Pizza, Slurp It Up, Why Don’t Ya.
Yields 1 jiggly-wiggly Jello Fruit Pizza.