Punished by an economy in turmoil, the newly jobless Suzan Colón turns to a swath of family recipes, long buried in her basement, hoping to find some comfort in hard financial times. She quickly realizes how closely her current challenges parallel those of her predecessors.
Childhood tales seam pleasingly into past, future and recipes, a family history powered by food. Already highly relatable in content, Cherries in Winter feels like a worn-in leather armchair, its comfortable manner ensures a steady friendship with any reader who happens along. Her gracefully wrought 'lessons' of economy and cookery, things she learns from her mother and the sheath of unearthed recipes, brim with honest disclosures, both moving and humorous by turn.
And the recipes, country cooking polished by necessary economy, glow heartily as only family fare can, from Aunt Nettie's Clam Chowder to Nana's Lemon Meringue Pie, some reprinted in spidery, early-century handwriting and some typed in 50s secretarial style. What Colón uncovers as she endeavors to survive a layoff with grim prospects is that economizing has always been part of her family's heritage.
Her message? With strengthened family ties and a few good recipes, anything's possible after you've put up soup. A warm tale of hope and family, Cherries in Winter satisfies.
Cherries in Winter: My Family's Recipe for Hope in Hard Times
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Review based on a free copy of this book, courtesy of the publisher.