Friday, December 19, 2014

Cranberry Thanksgiving: A Little History

"Whenever Grandmother baked her cranberry bread, she pulled her curtains tight.  The reason for this was that her cranberry bread was the most famous for miles around."

The book Cranberry Thanksgiving is such a fun read aloud.  We read it every year, and make the recipe for Cranberry Bread at least once a week during the fall.

Even though the theme is centered around Grandmother's famous recipe, it is also a good reminder that you can't always judge a book by it's cover.  Maggie and Grandmother each pick a guest to invite to Thanksgiving dinner.  Maggie invites the gruff Mr. Whiskers, and Grandmother invites the gentleman who "has a gold cane and smells of lavender."

Once everyone has been seated Maggie serves their Thanksgiving dinner.  "What a great full dinner that was - with everything cooked with crisp edges and tender centers." I just love that description.  It almost makes my mouth water.

As Maggie and Grandmother clear the table and go into the kitchen someone attempts to steal the recipe which she keeps "hid behind a brick in the fireplace."

Once the perpetrator has been caught the other three head back in the house.  "They sat by the warm embers of the fire and ate pumpkin pie with whipped cream."  Sounds like a lovely way to end a meal.

After reading this book I was curious as to what exactly a cranberry bog actually looks like.

For a quick lesson on harvesting cranberries check out this link here.  Did you know that cranberries are one of only three fruits native to North America?  According to Wikipedia, Native Americans were the first to use them as food, but they also used them for wound medicine and dye.

If you are looking for a quick bread that screams "Thanksgiving" you need to try the recipe that comes on the back of the book,  so you too can become famous like Grandma.

The loaves would make a lovely hostess gift baked in little tins and decorated with a bit of ribbon.   Give them as gifts to teachers, friends, family, or anyone that you feel needs a little pick me up.  The recipe uses orange juice and dried orange peel.  The sweet of the orange and the tartness of the cranberries really are a lovely combination.  

While looking for a link to the book I came across the official website for Harry and Wende Devlin.  The couple actually has 13 books in the Cranberry Series.  What a pleasant surprise.  I was also surprised to learn that Cranberry Thanksgiving was written in 1971.

Grab this book quickly and make it a yearly tradition.


  1. This is such an interesting bit of information. I am not a huge fan of cranberries, but I do like them in some recipes. This recipe actually sounds like one in which I would enjoy.

    1. My children don't really like cranberries, either. But, this recipe gets gobbled up every time! Thanks for visiting, Crystal! If you try it, let me know what you think.

  2. Sounds like a beautiful book; I'll have to check the library for it. I love all things cranberry and my husband has fond memories of cranberry bread from Christmas story his mom read to him.

    1. What a fun memory. I hope you enjoy this one, too! Thank you for stopping by, Abi.

  3. Thanks for linking at Pintastic Pinteresting Party. Looks like a great book to share with my boys!

  4. What a fantastic post, Channon. I cannot remember a time I actually ate cranberries, but I would love to see a cranberry bog. It would be so interesting. I love the learning and the good book combined! I'm pinning this post on my child literacy board. Thanks so much for sharing, and for linking up with us at the #homeschoollinkup!