Tonawanda News

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April 22, 2013

CURIOUS CULINARIAN: Jiggly snack is a blast from the past

It’s happened to the best of us.

All of a sudden, you realize that you promised to send a treat to school with your kids the next day. Or take something to a party. Or even just told your family that you’d do something together in the kitchen, forgetting that, as usual, there are 50 other things that also have to done.

So ... what’s fast? What’s easy? And what might only take an ingredient or too?

And here’s the confession: This happened to me last week. I was looking through my calendar here at the Tonawanda News newsroom and there it was: Food column due today.

Oops. I had planned to write about my first foray into French toast, but that had been delayed by family events. I moved the brunch plans back a week, but completely forget about the column. What’s a writer to do?

I was running down the list of things in my pantry amidst the panicked realization that I didn’t have much time that evening, as usual. Kids’ events, domestic chores ... when was I going to get the chance to do something?

I’m not sure what brought it to mind — maybe the brief thought of crisped rice cereal treats, which are nothing if not quick and easy — but I suddenly thought of a childhood treat, the sort of thing I always asked my mom to make for my school birthday snack.

We called them “Knox Blox,” after the most prominent brand of unflavored gelatin out there, but the ingredients are about as simple and generic as you can get. Gelatin, unflavored and/or flavored. Juice or water. Maybe a tiny touch of sweetener. They were totally the coolest homemade snack out there back in early elementary school ... but since I’d been a parent, I’d never even thought of them.

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