My colleague James Rabe recently asked the question, "Are Pop Tarts Ravioli." Well I got to thinking about some other things my Mom used to make, including what she called Jell-o salad. Now usually Jell-o was a dessert item. It was either plain or with a little whipped cream on top. But with shredded lettuce and carrots in it, and Miracle Whip on top, does it then qualify as a salad? Usually we define salad as lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, croutons, with a salad dressing.

And we always did, and still do, a fresh or canned fruit salad with whipped cream and mini marshmallows. It was served as a salad. Is it salad or dessert?

And what is the difference between goulash and hot dish? I just call everything one or the other. Wikipedia defines goulash as a stew of beef or veal and vegetables, flavored with paprika. Hot dish is defined as a variety of baked casserole that typically contains a starch, a meat or other protein, and a canned and/or frozen vegetable, mixed with canned soup.

It still all seems like hotdish to me. Feel free to email comments at

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