In Which a Holiday Treat Shows Up a Bit Early…

Creamy fruit salad...

If you grew up in the Philippines, frozen fruit salad was most likely a part of your family’s Christmas meal.  A simple mixture of tinned fruit cocktail dressed with sweetened whipping cream, it makes a light finale to any huge Yuletide meal that was most probably heavy on the protein.

While I was growing up, you could tell that Christmas was speeding on its way when your mother (and everyone else’s for that matter) started stockpiling fruit cocktail and tins of Nestle cream for that year’s salad.  Back then, it was a really special treat: the imported fruit cocktail with copious amounts of peaches and green grapes and studded with pineapple and cherries nestled like sweet jewels in the snowy whiteness of the frozen cream.

These days, people no longer need to wait till Christmas to have frozen fruit salad for dessert.  Local canneries have been producing their own fruit cocktail for ages and cream is no longer a tinned luxury as local dairies have been boxing the stuff up in tetra-paks.  It has, essentially, become an affordable luxury that echoes the sentiment of a local Holiday song: …at, magmula ngayon, kahit hindi Pasko ay magbigayan.  Even if it isn’t Christmas, we have to keep a spirit of giving and loving to others.

Plus, given the sweltering weather plaguing us of late, it has become a fruity, healthy alternative to ice cream for staving off the heat.

Frozen Fruit Salad

  • 1 medium (approximately 400 – 500g) can fruit cocktail
  • 250mL all-purpose cream
  • 250mL condensed milk

Drain the fruit cocktail, reserving the syrup for other recipes.  (Waste not, want not!)  Whip together the cream and condensed milk till well-combined.  Fold in the drained fruit.  Tip the mixture into either a freezer-safe container or individual molds (the kind used for gelatin desserts).  Freeze till firm.  Allow to ripen 10 – 15 minutes at room temperature before serving.

Serves 8.