The Best Cranberry Sauce Evah…….

Yeah, I know. It takes a lot to declare something “Best Evah”. ‘Cause usually it isn’t. I try to not shout this too often for that reason, but yeah, this cranberry sauce will slap you in the face and demand to be eaten. Not to be ignored and found moldy in the frig on the second week of January…..this you will want a big serving of, even better spread on sammies later…if you have leftovers that is.

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And the best part? It is made from Dried Cranberries. I have had an issue with a certain large company for many years, and out of spite I refuse to buy their products (see below for why, if you want to read my blowhard ramblings…..). This makes it very hard to find fresh or frozen cranberries that are not by them, they own the market frankly. And if by chance I do find another brand they are often twice the price. Ack.

Better is not having to pay $2.50 for a 12 ounce bag of fresh berries that smell slightly alcoholic, because they are starting to ferment, and then having toss part of the bag.

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The berries stay together as well, unlike when making traditional sauce, where they fall apart. I kept thinking how awesome this sauce would have been over a bowl of vanilla ice cream….Happy Holidays everyone, and enjoy your Tuesday Dinner!

Dried Cranberry Maple Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 1½ cups Dried Cranberries
  • ¾ cup orange juice, preferably with pulp
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup
  • ¼ tsp dried orange peel
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp fine sea salt
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • 2 Tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot powder

Directions:

Add the cranberries, orange juice, maple syrup, orange peel, cinnamon and salt to a medium saucepan. Heat over medium until simmering. Simmer gently for 5 or so minutes, until the cranberries are soft.

Meanwhile, whisk the cornstarch into the remaining orange juice. Add to the cranberries, whisking in, till thickened.

Remove from heat, chill until cold.

Serves 4 large portions or 6 to 8 small ones.

~ Sarah

So what is my beef with said cranberry mega-company?

Years ago, when I was first starting out developing recipes for my outdoor website, TrailCooking, I made the mistake of leaving off one © or ® symbol after using the brand name of a certain dried cranberry product, although every time I had referenced said product there was always a hyper-link to the company’s webpage, as well as using the symbols on the rest. One time I forgot to add it to a recipe. I got the nastiest email from a house lawyer threatening me and my website.

It was overkill. A simple “Hey, we noticed you like our products and use them a lot but you forgot to add a copyright symbol on one of your recipes, can you fix it?” would have gotten them immediate action. Instead they used heavy-handed cease and desist tactics. I was dumbstruck. And severely peeved. So I removed every reference to the company then and there. No more links to their company, and when I was using dried cranberries in a recipe I never, ever used the commercially successful trademarked name that most Americans associate with dried cranberries after that.

The thing about it is that over the years I have recommended many companies products because I liked them , on my blogs and websites. And a number of times I have had those companies contact me and thank me for using/liking their products. Many have added my recipes to their websites even or shared my recipes. Pretty cool, really! But out of all of this only one company has ever complained. One. And yes, it was a certain cranberry overlord o_O All because out of 50 or more references, I simply forgot to add a copyright symbol to one of them. Sheesh. To companies out there – this wasn’t the way to approach a life-long customer!

Holidays 2011: Jelled Cranberry Maple Sauce

A holiday recipe that slipped through the blogging crack…..

The sauce needs to sit overnight to have time for the maple and the sour cranberries to meld together. After I had made the sauce I wasn’t sure about the sweetness, it had a bitter touch but once we sat down to eat dinner it was perfect tasting.

Jelled Cranberry Maple Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 12 ounce bag cranberries, frozen or fresh
  • ¾ cup pure maple syrup
  • ½ cup orange juice
  • ½ cup water

Directions:

Add everything to a tall saucepan, bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring often.When the mixture comes to a boil, cover tightly and turn down to medium-low. Let boil gently for 15 minutes, stirring as needed.

Take off the heat and press the mixture through a fine mesh strainer.

Chill overnight before serving.

Serves 8 as a side dish.

~Sarah

Jellied Orange Spiced Cranberry Sauce

I play around every year with the cranberry sauce but overall I have found I simply prefer a jellied version over whole berry. And honestly cranberry sauce is one of those foods that you should play around with it – it is pretty hard to ruin it. This is a large double batch but still it isn’t that much once you remove the pulp. You do have plenty leftover for tasty sammies though!

Jellied Orange Spiced Cranberry Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups orange juice
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 12-ounce packages fresh cranberries

Directions:

Rinse the cranberries under cold water and shake dry.

In a tall saucepan bring the orange juice, sugar and cinnamon to a boil over high, add in the cranberries and let return to a boil. Turn the heat down to medium and let gently boil for 10 minutes, turning down the heat to medium-low as needed, stirring often.

Take off the heat and press through a wire mesh strainer with a wooden spoon or spatula, discarding the pulp when no more comes out.

Let cool down on the counter, uncovered. Store tightly sealed in the refrigerator and serve cold.

~Sarah

Orange Cranberry Sauce

I tried a different concept this year for our cranberry sauce and for the most part am happy with it. I like to make it the night before so it is well chilled/set up.

Orange Cranberry Sauce


Ingredients:

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

3/4 cup orange juice

1 1/2 Tbsp honey

1/8 tsp ground allspice

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

12-ounces fresh cranberries (1 package)

Directions:

In a heavy saucepan combine all the ingredients and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Lower the heat to medium low and simmer for about 12 minutes, stirring often.

Remove from the heat and press through a fine mesh sieve till all that is left is the cranberry peels. Refrigerate till needed. The sauce will be thick immediately.

~Sarah

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