Jell-O Showdown: Sparkling Grapefruit Pie

Not satisfied with competing in the art of making stuffing, the Chow Bella staff is at it again. This show down is all about Jell-O.

Jell-O? The last time we consumed Jell-O sans alcohol was fifteen years ago at a cousin's outdoor wedding reception when Great Aunt Betty, mistaking her electric blue eyeliner for an eyebrow pencil, served it to us looking like the super-villain version of Estelle Getty. That traumatic event was enough to keep us away from the tottery treat until now. For this challenge, we're using our chimp-like attraction to bright, shiny things and our insatiable appetite for pies and preparing a special treat even an aged super-villain would enjoy: Sparkling Grapefruit Pie.

Sparkling Grapefruit Pie


1 (9-inch) pie crust, baked 4 pink grapefruit ½ cup white sugar 1 tablespoon cornstarch ¾ cup grapefruit juice 1 (3 ounce) package strawberry-flavored gelatin


1.) Peel grapefruit, removing all pith. Cut up into bite-size pieces. Drain in a strainer for 4 or more hours. This can be done the day before. Collect the juice.

2.) Combine the sugar, cornstarch, and ¾ cup juice in a small saucepan; if the collected juice does not measure ¾ cup, top it off with water. Bring to a boil. Stir in strawberry gelatin. Cool slightly.

3.) Spread grapefruit in the bottom of the baked shell, and pour gelatin over the fruit. Cool.

Notes on the process:

- Make your own crust. Anything store-bought from tree elves is unacceptable.

- The most important part of this recipe is effectively removing the pith, or taking off the flesh, of the grapefruit. Any pith biths, er, pith bits not removed will make for a bitter taste. Check the Internet for a gaggle of visual how-to's.

- As Aunt Betty says, "Failure to plan is planning to fail." Make sure the grapefruit drains for four or more hours to prevent the soggies.

What we learned:

- Pretty pie! Pretty pie! Pretty pie!

- Surprisingly, this pie tastes...healthy, and for that reason and the fact that it's served cold, makes us think it would be better suited for a picnic table than a dinner table.

- Everything's better with extra creamy Redi-Whip. That's right, everything.

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Laura Hahnefeld
Contact: Laura Hahnefeld