A Cherished Family Recipe: Cranberry Crack

Ink on Watercolor Paper

Our challenge for week thirty-four of our fifty week program was a recipe. Instantly I knew what I would do. I have been wanting to turn a cherished Bailey family recipe into a calligraphy piece to have it then converted into a China plate. I plan to give these as Christmas gifts this year. I am sharing this final piece with the pencil guidelines still showing, sort of a behind the scenes look at the production of the piece. FYI – I used sixteen sheets of tracing paper to get the design to this stage.

I first made this recipe when my husband and I were dating. He was going to visit for Thanksgiving and I had heard him talk about this “jello thing” his Mom made for the holidays; so I called her and got the recipe. I wrote it here with the same spellings from 1964. He was surprised that I had made it, made it right, and the rest is romantic history…it may be the actual moment I won my husband’s heart! Our modern day family calls this Cranberry Crack, I always make at least a double batch each holiday. It is usually the first leftover to run out.

Memories are what bind us to people. All families have cherished memories, many of them revolve around food. Being given the opportunity to share something time and time again somehow connects us to each other even when we are apart. Be it food, a game, a story or an event doing things with people solidifies their place in our hearts no matter the distance between us. Love and affection grow when we can count on things to stay the same even as life changes all around us. The key is to make the memorable thing a positive one, if not it may be a story that lives forever and we dread hearing every time people gather. Take time to celebrate your family memories and be sure to write down those recipes for the next generation.

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