Friday, December 31, 2010


This morning I was reading the sign board on an earlier posting that told about the New Year Traditions in Vietnam.  I really liked them.  I especially liked the aspect of life on New Years to honor the Earth with Gratitude.  Maybe we would treat the earth better if we honored it on New Years.

The second aspect is Respect for the Dead.  Red scrolls are printed with poetry that reads, paying respect to our ancestors for our family, or returning the favor to our family for raising us.  A departed family member is named.  A stick of incense is burned for each name as prayers are said, and singing bowls are played. 

I name my family to be honored:  Minnie, Julia and Ernest.

As you know by now, I am all about keeping the stories alive of my parents and grandparents for the next generations.  They are so easily lost.  There are so many questions I wished I had asked before everyone past over.  Following the Vietnamese tradition, I think New Years should become a time of family stories.  I added my stories to the Christmas celebrations and there was the traditional eye rolling.  I know I didn't listen as well as I should have or as I would listen now if they could only tell me again. 

I name my family to be honored:  Harry and Julia.

My Mom prepared this salad every Christmas. It was my job to cut and seed the grapes as there were no seedless grapes back then. There were very few fresh fruits available back in the 1940's and 1950's.  Oranges, bananas and grapes were a few of the only fruits available in the winter.  All the other fruit we ate was canned. 

Sweet, cold and juicy.  Enjoy!!!!

So many fruit salads are filled with puddings or heavy creams.  This one is healthy, easy to make, and refreshing to eat.  Mom would serve it as a fruit cup, but the salad looks beautiful in a glass bowl on a buffet too.

Approximately 1 lb. red grapes, halved and seeded if necessary or to taste
Approximately 6 large Navel oranges, peeled and cut into chunks
Sugar to taste
Approximately 2 bananas, sliced
Orange juice, if desired

Ingredients:  Navel Oranges, red grapes, bananas, sugar and orange juice, if desired.

Cut the white pith off the orange so the juices are able to flow. Combine the grapes and oranges. Sprinkle with sugar and mix together. It does not take much sugar to make this salad sweet. Chill. Just before serving, add bananas and gently mix together. If you want more juice, add a touch of orange juice. Serve in fruit cups.

Rinse grapes well.

Cut the skin and pith off the orange.

Cut orange into pieces.

Cut grapes in half.

Combine oranges and grapes.

Sprinkle with some sugar.  Don't use too much as the juices from the grapes and oranges will sweeten the salad too.

Chill and allow the sugar to pull the juices from the fruit.  I like to chill overnight.

Just before serving, add sliced bananas.  Add a little orange juice if you want more juice in the salad.  Put salad in a pretty, clear, glass bowl.

Serve like my Mom as a fruit cup or place bowl of salad on a buffet table.  Enjoy!!!

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