Friday, November 23, 2012

Thanksgiving Special: Cranberry Sauce

Once you make your own cranberry sauce you may never go back to the canned kind.  Warm fresh cranberry sauce is incredible and takes very little effort.  The basic recipe is on the back of most bags of cranberries; the zest and cinnamon take it over the top.  Frozen berries can be added when the cranberries are too for a different twist; cherries and blueberries are great, strawberries did not work so well.  When the cranberry skins pop it can be a little messy so this is not the time to wear a favorite white shirt. 

Cranberries are hard to get most of the year but they freeze very well.  I suggest stocking up with as many as your freezer can hold while they are on sale for the holidays to use throughout the year.  In addition to cranberry sauce, they are great in bread, smoothies, and syrup. Keep an eye out for those recipes during the year as I get cranberry cravings!

Homemade Cranberry Sauce

1 package cranberries (12 oz)
1 c sugar
1 c water
1/2 tsp orange zest
1/2 tsp to 1 tsp cinnamon

1. Pour cranberries into a bowl, rinse to get rid of any bits of stems or leaves, and sort out any bad ones.  No need to thaw them out if they were frozen.

2.  In a medium saucepan, mix together the water and sugar and bring to a boil.

3. Add cranberries, zest, and cinnamon.  Bring back up to a boil then turn down to a simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.  The cranberry skins will pop as they heat up.  When most of the skins have popped, remove from heat.

4. Optional: For jellied cranberry sauce without the whole berries, put a fine mesh sieve over a container and pour the sauce into it.  Use a spoon to press the liquid through.  Discard the skins and seeds that will be left in the mesh.  Chill if desired.

5. Pour sauce into a pretty serving dish!

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