Minnesota Comfort Food-Chocolate Eclair Dessert

Recently, my aunt in Minnesota sent me my grandma’s recipe for Chocolate Eclair desert.  This is one of my family’s favorite desert recipes and is often made during the winter.  Don’t get scared off by the fancy name-it is very simple.  It goes together very quickly…..the hardest part is waiting a day or two for it to chill in the refrigerator. 

Here is the recipe as my aunt sent it to me:

1 box Honey Graham Crackers Whole
2 pkgs.  French Vanilla Jello Instant Pudding
1 – 9oz container Cool Whip

6 oz. chocolate chips
2 Teaspoons white Karo Syrup
1 Teaspoon Vanilla
3 Tablespoons melted Butter
1-1/2 Cups powdered sugar
3 Tablespoons milk

Butter 9 X 13 pan.  Line with whole graham crackers.  Make pudding using 1/4 Cup less milk than directed.  Blend in Cool Whip.  Pour 1/2 mixture over crackers and then put down another layer of crackers.  Pour the rest of the pudding mixture over the crackers.  Top with another layer of crackers.  Mix frosting.  Melt the chips in a double boiler and then add the rest of the ingredients. Stir until the lumps from the powdered sugar are gone.  Spread frosting on top of crackers.  Chill for 2 days before serving.  (Refrigerate at least overnight before serving as it needs to set and will be easier to cut and serve.)

My aunt went on to note with sadness that graham crackers today are not what they used to be.  She claims they’ve shrunk so make sure you have another package on hand if needed!

Many recipes in Minnesota require Cool Whip.  Another family favorite recipe is simply called “green salad”.  If you happen to go to a potluck church meal in the Upper Midwest you may find it.  “Green salad” is actually cottage cheese, cool whip, sour cream, madarin oranges, and green jello mix with cherries sprinkled on the top.  No, Green salad was not considered dessert.  It was considered healthy because of the fruit and dairy in it and was served with the main meal. 

Another popular ingredient to family meals is cream of mushroom soup.  I will ask for my aunt’s tunafish hotdish recipe and put it here.  Tunafish hotdish is popular during Lent, especially on Fridays.  Today, my mom can’t stand it because she ate it so much as a kid, but my aunt still loves it.  Tunafish hotdish is usually accompanied by blueberry muffins.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. jijibean
    Mar 04, 2009 @ 20:35:05

    I just started reading some of your blog, among other inter-cultural relationship blogs and this entry really made me smile : )
    I’m originally from MN as well. I totally had flashbacks to pot-lucks and grandma’s desserts. Your descriptions made me laugh. Cream of mushroom soup . . . don’t forget tator-tot hot dish . . . (I tried making it with veggie/soy crumbles once, didn’t turn out too well). Anyway, thanks for the memories.

    Welcome! I’m glad you liked that post.

    Tator-Tot hotdish was one of my favorites! Delicious.


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