Prepare the cherry Jello the night before you make this dessert so it is well firmed and ready to be cubed. I use the maraschino cherry juice straight from the jar of stemmed cherries (the really sweet stuff – don’t use unsweet!). If you come up short of one cup maraschino juice, you can add fruit juice or grenadine to bring the measurement to 1 cup.
1 1/2cups360 ml heavy whipping cream, whipped to stiff peaks
Whipped cream topping
3/4cup180 ml heavy whipping cream
Chocolate ribbon and décor
8-10whole maraschino cherries with stems
Make the Jello cubes: Combine the package of cherry Jello and hot water in a bowl; stir until the sugar is dissolved and stir in the cold water. Pour the gelatin in a shallow dish (8 or 9-inch) and refrigerate for several hours or overnight until firm. Cut the firm Jello into 1-inch cubes. Measure out about 2/3 cup cubes and set aside (you will have left over Jello cubes for snacks!).
Line an 8x8 inch square pan with parchment paper (or waxed paper) that overhangs all four edges of the pan.
Make the graham crust: Stir together the graham crumbs and melted butter until all the crumbs are coated and the mixture resembles wet sand. Press evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan.
Make the filling: Whisk together the powdered gelatin and maraschino juice in a small saucepan; wait about 3 minutes for the gelatin to disperse evenly. Heat the mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture is clear and no granules of gelatin remain. Remove from the heat and transfer to a bowl; add the 1/4 cup cold water and stir. Refrigerate until cool (stirring intermittently) and slightly thickened but not set, about 10 minutes. Fold the maraschino gelatin mixture into the whipped cream and immediately pour over the graham crust in the pan. Quickly add the Jello cubes and press them into the mixture with the back of a spatula.
Make the whipped cream: In an electric mixer fitted with the whip attachment, beat the heavy cream while adding the granulated sugar gradually. Beat to stiff peaks. Spread the whipped topping over the maraschino filling. Refrigerate until the dessert is set, about 3 to 4 hours.
Prepare the chocolate: Heat the chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl in the microwave at 100% power at 20 second increments until the chocolate is melted and can be stirred smooth. Let cool slightly. Transfer to a zip-top bag and snip a tiny hole in one corner.
Remove the dessert from the pan by lifting it out by the overhanging paper. Cut into squares. Arrange the squares on a large serving plate and pipe chocolate ribbons onto each square. Top each square with one maraschino cherry. Serve.