As a kid I never knew that the sweet/tart flavor of cranberry sauce would perfectly complement my lean, mild turkey. That’s because every year of my childhood there was a mysterious gelatinous red log that sat, untouched, on our Thanksgiving table. How could it indefinitely retain it’s perfect canned shape? As an adult I now understand the “how”, but will never “why” people still buy that stuff. As a child I never ate the congealed red goo growing up, so now as a parent would never pass on such an absurd “tradition” to my own children. Why would I spend 6 hours making a Turkey, and then not spend 15 or 20 minutes on fresh cranberry sauce.
- Ocean Spray supplies 75% of the total world-wide market of cranberries, but has a 100% monopoly on the supermarket supply of cranberries in my area. The lack of competition has resulted in inferior berries. I usually have to throw away up to 1/4 of the bag, because they sell unripe berries intermixed with ripe one. The monopoly means that I have no alternative.
Cost: $2.20 for 2-1/4 cups.
How much work? Low.
How big of a mess? Low.
Start time 1:00 PM. Ready at 1:25 PM.
Chris Kimball’s original recipe is here. The descriptions of how I prepared the recipe today are given below:
1 cup sugar (7-1/2 ounces)
1 tablespoon grated orange zest, from 2 oranges.
1/4 teaspoon salt
12-oz bag cranberries.
2 tablespoons orange Triple Sec or Grand Marnier
- Picked through your cranberries and discard those that are not ripe. Wash in cold water.
- In a medium saucepan set over high heat, bring water, sugar, orange zest, and salt to boil. Stir occasionally while the sugar dissolves.
- Add washed cranberries to pan, return the mixture to a boil over medium burner for 5 minutes, without stirring.
- Reduce to medium/low heat and simmer until about two-thirds of berries have popped open and sauce thickens, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- Remove from heat and stir in the Triple Sec.
- Place in serving bowl and allow to cool to room temperature. You can make cranberry sauce up to 7 days ahead; but be sure to allow to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.