From the CPP Culinary School

CPP stands for “Container, Paper and Plastic”. See, I learned how to cook from the recipes on food containers or printed in ads. I still check out the containers for recipes. Food packagers (and, let’s face it, food manufacturers) pay people good money to come up with recipes that make those foods appealing, so why not try them?

Here’s one I tried over the holidays and really liked. It was on a can of store-brand cranberry sauce. It’s vegan, if you use vegan margarine, as I did, but not gluten-free, unless you have a gluten-free flour you can substitute. Maybe powder some oatmeal and substitute that?


  • 1 1/2 cup uncooked rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter or margarine
  • 1 can (14 ounces) jellied cranberry sauce
  • ice cream [or whipped topping]

Preheat oven to 350F. In a bowl, mix together oats, flour and brown sugar. Cut in butter until crumbly [the butter, I assume, not you]. Press half of the mixture into an 8″ square baking dish. Spread with cranberry sauce. Top with remaining crumb mixture. Bake 45 minutes. Serve warm with ice cream. [or whipped topping]

I really liked this. It’s not too sweet, which was refreshing after the sweet-laden holiday. I think it might be good heated in the microwave and eaten like cereal for breakfast, maybe with a little vanilla almond milk. Mmmmmmm!

WRITING PROMPT: What does your main character habitually eat for breakfast? Or DOES your main character eat breakfast?



I was born in Louisville, Kentucky, but now live in the woods in southern Indiana. Though I only write fiction, I love to read non-fiction. The more I learn about this world, the more fantastic I see it is.

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One thought on “From the CPP Culinary School

  1. Enid Wilson

    January 5, 2012 at 3:29am

    I made a “bad” cake two weeks ago and I’ve remade it, using a smaller tin and it worked well. I think baking can teach writers something too. Don’t be afraid of mistake and keep trying. Thanks for the recipe.

    The Spinster’s Vow

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    • Author

      Marian Allen

      January 5, 2012 at 8:25am

      Good analogy, Enid! You’re so right. And, while cooks can’t always eat their mistakes, writers can always file failures and pick them apart (cannibalize them, I call it) and use the good bits in something else. 😉 Of course, now that I think of it, I’ve been known to rinse a nasty sauce off a pile of chunky ingredients and use them in something else. Don’t tell anybody. 😉

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