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Ambrosia that's good and fast

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Merry Christmas to all of the Examiner readers! I hope you're having a wonderful day today and that you enjoy it to the fullest! And while you're enjoying yourself, always remember that it's the birthday of Our Savior, Jesus Christ, so be sure to wish Him "Happy Birthday" today.

You may be already cooking your holiday meal and getting the big feast ready. And sometimes, when cooking, you go to look for a recipe and can't find it. This has happened to me many times and it's frustrating when you know you have it somewhere and it can't be found. This leads me into the recipe that I'm sharing, which is for "Good and Fast Ambrosia".

For those of you who aren't familiar with this dish, it's an old Southern recipe that consists of pineapple, oranges and coconut. There are scores of recipes for it, some of which call for sour cream, fruit cocktail, chopped nuts, bananas and even apples. Some purists believe that it's imperative that you use fresh fruits and it's a crime if you leave out the coconut!

Some years ago, a former co-worker of my mother's made a dish of ambrosia that my mother claimed was the best she had ever eaten. She described to me what was in it and since I was unable to contact this former co-worker, I decided to come up with my own version of it, which I'm passing along to you now. This is slightly different from some of the ambrosia recipes you may have had before.

This one is easy enough, since you use some canned pineapple chunks and mandarin orange segments. These are drained and combined with some thawed frozen coconut. Along with it goes some miniature marshmallows. So far, this is much like the ambrosia you're familiar with. But here's where the resemblance ends: you whip some whipping cream with sugar and vanilla and fold this into the mixture. It's now ready to be chilled for a while and then it's ready to enjoy.

This can be served numerous ways. It can be served as a side dish or as a dessert. As a dessert, it can be served as is or over a slice of pound cake. I enjoy it for dessert since it's light and you're getting some fruit into your diet!

About two years ago, I shared another recipe for ambrosia that used orange juice concentrate for the flavoring and also passed along a recipe for "Ambrosia Cookies". If you'd like these recipes, follow this link:

And, if you would like to see a video about making ambrosia, here's the link to one:

Once again, Merry Christmas to you and best wishes for good eating!


  • 1 medium can (20 oz.) pineapple chunks, drained
  • 1 medium can (11 oz.) mandarin orange segments, drained
  • 1 bag (7 oz.) frozen coconut, thawed
  • 1 cup miniature marshmallows
  • 1/2 pt. (1 cup) chilled whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons sugar (see note)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Chill a large bowl and beaters. Drain the fruits and combine in a large bowl with the coconut and marshmallows. In a chilled bowl with chilled beaters, whip the cream until soft peaks form. Add the sugar and vanilla and beat until stiff, being careful not to overwhip. Fold into the fruit mixture. Cover and chill at least 3-4 hours. Yield: 6 servings.

Note: taste the completed ambrosia for sugar and add more, if you feel it needs it.



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