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Big Joe’s Famous Cranberry Bread [Recipe]

Flickr - Photo by exqueue
Flickr – Photo by exqueue

This recipe is from Ann Hillyer of Freehold. Ann is a friend and teacher. She does a wonderful job working with kids who need a little extra help and care. Her patience and diligence in working with those children who need it, is exemplary.

I’m friends with Ann’s daughter Janine, who’s terrific. Last Thanksgiving Janine got this recipe from her mom, Ann, and made a large batch of Ann’s Famous Cranberry Bread.

Janine made five loaves of this delicacy at my house for her family and friends. Well, you know my act; I smell the bread and only one loaf made it out of the door! It is really good! My apologies to the Hillyer family. It’s my fault that Janine never made it to your house with the cranberry bread. I asked Janine and Ann to contribute this wonderful recipe and they were both generous enough to share it with us. Thanks ladies.

I asked Ann to give a little background on the recipe and she wrote: My daughter was supposed to be a Thanksgiving baby but as I have come to learn over the years, she has her own time table, and so was born in early November.As with many special events in my life I wanted to celebrate her birth with a book. I bought “Cranberry Thanksgiving” by Wende & Harry Devlin, a cute children’s holiday story. When she grew old enough to help, we always made this recipe together (it was included in the book).

Cranberries are one of Jersey’s best crops and the moist, tasty autumn flavors of this dessert bread-cake are still favorites with us. My daughter, Janine, Tiffany, and I would triple or quadruple the recipe and make lots of mini-loaves for our friends and neighbors.

We would wrap the tiny loaves in aluminum foil and tie a pretty fall colored ribbon around them. What special memories are evoked by this cheerful, sharing, autumn celebration of life!


2 cups all purpose flour, sifted

1 cup of sugar

1 ½ teaspoons of baking powder

1 teaspoon of salt

½ teaspoon of baking soda

¼ cup butter

1 egg beaten

1 teaspoon orange peel, grated

¾ cup of orange juice

1 ½ cups of light raisins

1 ½ cups of fresh or frozen cranberries, chopped

How to put it together:

Sift flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda into a large bowl. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly.

Add egg, orange peel and orange juice all at once; stir until mixture is evenly moist. Fold in raisins and cranberries.

Spoon into greased 9x5x3 inch loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour and 10 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Remove from pan; cool on wire rack.

You may substitute cranberries for the raisins to have an all cranberry bread.

This recipe comes from Big Joe Henry’s Big Jersey Cookbook

Click here for more Big Joe Recipes

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