Cranberry Punch


Many of my recipes come with a funny story, but I think this one may be the strangest tale yet.

My folks used to make this punch often, and I didn’t think anything was unusual about it. I just knew it tasted good and was a cheery color for any holiday gathering.

Many years ago, as a Navy wife, I was putting on a “wetting down” party. I made this punch without a second thought.

Because we were active in our local church, as well as involved with the Navy officers and their families, there were two distinct groups that came to the party. One of these groups was made up of teetotalers (I’ll let you guess which one), and the other group was made up of people who had come to really “party.”

We had a long living area so we put a big bowl of this punch at each end of the room. As the military folks came in, their first question was “Which one has the booze?”

Well, neither one did, but we pointed out one of them and said, “That one.”

Needless to say, that particular bowl of punch had to be refilled over and over throughout the evening. Those who were drinking out of that one grew happier and happier, not realizing that it was “straight” punch.

This punch is so simple and quick to make that I’m almost embarrassed to put it here as a recipe, but here goes.

Recipe: Use equal parts of cranberry juice, 7-Up, and apple juice. Pour together in a big punch bowl, and add plenty of ice. That’s all there is to it!

Serve it up tomorrow night for your New Years’ Eve party. I won’t tell, if you won’t!

By the way, Sonia, another Big Island Foodie who writes “Soniatasteshawaii,” made the cranberry bread I posted last Wednesday and included it on her blog. Please check it out.

Hau`oli Makahiki Hou! (Happy New Year!)

Cranberry Bread


A few Christmases ago, my brother gave me a gift certificate from Ace Hardware. I bought an old-fashioned grinder like the one I remember using to grind up cranberries for the bread our mother often made. It is still one of my favorite fruity breads.

There is a funny incident that goes along with this recipe. All I could find here was a snippet of paper with my mother’s handwriting that said “4 cranberry bread.” It had these massive amounts of flour and sugar and eggs, but with absolutely no mention of cranberries or how much. It had probably been her way of making sure she had the right amounts when she made up four loaves of the bread.

So I called my daughter, Debbie, to see if I had given her the recipe at some point. She pulled out a cookbook I’d made up for her as a wedding present many years ago. Sure enough, there it was. She read it off to me and I offer it to you here.


Cranberry Bread


2 cups coarsely chopped cranberries (I used my hand-grinder above)
½ cup chopped nuts
2 cups sifted flour
1 cup sugar
1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
Juice and grated rind of 1 orange
2 tablespoons butter
1 egg
Water as needed, but leave the batter rather stiff.

Combine everything except the cranberries and nuts. Fold cranberries and nuts into batter. Line bread pan with greased waxed paper.

Bake at 350 degrees F. for 50-60 minutes.

A hui hou!