When recalling Christmas family gatherings during his childhood, Uncle Henry’s candy dish remains a vivid memory for Carl Harvey.
As a youngster, Carl often pretended to sneak over to the brimming dish of delicious homemade chocolates and steal a candy, while Uncle Henry pretended not to look. The game often continued all afternoon, much to the delight of the young boy and his uncle.
Henry, who farmed for a living, started making the holiday candies after each fall harvest so they were ready in time for Christmas. He got the recipes and learned to make the sweets from a man he met at a travel club in the 1950s, and the candy became a traditional part of the family holiday celebration.
One year Henry became ill during the fall and was unable to make his candy. Carl says Christmas that year just wasn’t the same without it. Once Henry fully recovered from his illness, Carl asked Henry to teach him everything he knew about candy making so he could preserve the treasured family recipes and techniques.
It didn’t take long before Carl was skillfully duplicating the beloved chocolate treats including turtles, bark, and peanut clusters; and pecan logs.
More people began asking Carl for the candy, so he started selling them at local retail outlets around Cicero and expanded his market territory with an online store. Through the years, he’s developed a loyal following of customers.
People often ask Carl what makes the candy so good. With a gleam in his eye, he tells them his handmade candies are unlike any other candy on the market because he puts a very special ingredient into them — his special memories of the good times and holiday traditions he once shared with Uncle Henry.
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