I don't particularly like cranberries...who does? But it's one of those dishes that seems to have become a Thanksgiving "must", kind of like fruit cake and Christmas. According to a page on the Michigan State University Extension Service's website, here is a succinct explanation of how cranberries got caught up in Thanksgiving:
Due to the importance of cranberries in the 1500s and their abundance, it is believed that the pilgrims and the American Indians would have eaten them at the first Thanksgiving.
Among the Amish, I doubt cranberries have much of a spot in their culinary culture historically. If you look at Amish cooking and baking since they arrived in the United States 400 years ago, most Amish cooking is very basic, in a very narrow spectrum, and is very much locally sourced.
Cranberries just wouldn’t have been a part of that. Now, what you started to see happening in Amish culinary culture after World War II, is larger “pop-culture food trends “seeping into Amish cooking. Post-World War II production brought a lot of foods to in the Amish kitchen for the first time, foods they'd never been there before: canned soups, convenience foods, gelatin, and marshmallows.
In many ways the Amish experienced the same food revolution that everybody else did, it just came a little bit later. A “cranberry fluff “recipe like this isn’t even necessarily Amish per se, it’s a recipe that was introduced to the community from outside and was made popular. I'm sure Amish cooks made their own twists and tweaks and variations. Cranberries are probably found on many Amish Thanksgiving tables today, but it's an outside influence. The whole Thanksgiving feast is a pop culture influence on the Amish, many of the more conservative communities don't observe the day at all!
Back to the recipe, it’s are to find a recipe that actually has a clue as to its date of origin. In the last ingredient it called for heavy whipped cream or for “Lucky Whip “. Had no clue what “Lucky Whip" was and there isn't much online about it, not even a Wikipedia entry. One commenter on a website described Lucky Whip as a "whipped cream powder from the 50s and 60s. " Powdered whipped cream? Intriguing. Apparently, a ready kind also came in a can.
I’ve never even heard of Lucky Whip, apparently it is like Cool Whip, and was really popular during the 1950s and 60s. And by the year 2000 could no longer be found on shelves. But I can’t find a whole lot about that brand name. So this tells me that this recipe fits nicely in the post World War II food trends. I took the Lucky Whip out of the recipe because it would just confuse people since the brand is no longer around.
Start out with a large bowl and add the sugar to the cranberries, and then you'll add mini marshmallows.
Adding the marshmallows, just stir them in with a fork.
Stir it up well. Some of the cranberries, you'll mash as you stir, others will stay whole, and that's fine. The original recipe called for grinding up the cranberries, but no one is going to do that, this worked fine.
After sitting overnight, add the whipped topping - beaten stiff - and the apples, grapes, and nuts.
After you stir it well you can then put the cranberry fluff into individual serving bowls like above and it'll be a nice addition to your Thanksgiving feast, even for those - like me - who don't care for cranberries!
🥄 Easy Amish Cranberry Fluff
2 cups raw cranberries
3 cups mini marshmallows
¾ cup sugar
2 cups unpeeled diced apples
½ -1 cup green grapes, quartered
½ cup broken nuts
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup heavy cream, beaten stiff
In a large bowl, combine cranberries, marshmallows, and sugar.
Cover and chill overnight.
The next day, add apples, grapes, nuts, and salt.
Fold in whipped cream just before serving.
More Amish Cranberry Dishes
🖨️ Full Recipe
Easy Amish Cranberry Fluff
- 2 cups raw cranberries ground fine
- 3 cups mini marshmallows
- ¾ cup sugar
- 2 cups unpeeled diced apples
- ½ -1 cup green grapes, quartered
- ½ cup broken nuts
- ¼ tsp salt
- 1 cup heavy cream beaten stiff
- Combine cranberries, marshmallows, and sugar.
- Cover and chill overnight.
- Add apples, nuts, grapes and salt.
- Fold in whipped cream just before serving.