You don’t have to wait until Thanksgiving to enjoy regional cranberries, but they sure are swell with turkey, especially in those day-after sandwiches. Here, I paired dried and fresh cranberrries for a varied texture and extra oomph. If you prefer an alternative to the neutral sweetener of sugar, try adding local maple syrup or honey to taste.
Tip: I like to make extra and then freeze some in ice cube trays. Store the cubes to defrost later and serve on sandwiches, wraps or with roasted chicken.
Makes about 2-1/2 cups
1 small or 1/2 a large seedless navel orange, cut into 4-6 wedges
2/3 to 3/4 cup sugar
2/3 cup water
12 ounces cranberries, (3 cups)
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1-1/2 teaspoons to 1 tablespoon Grand Marnier, or any good quality orange liqueur
1-Cut the orange, rind and all, into 4 to 6 wedges. Add to a food processor and pulse until well chopped, scraping down the sides if necessary.
2-Add all of the orange, sugar and to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Stir to combine with the fresh and dried cranberries. Cook over medium heat, and simmer, stirring occasionally so the bottom doesn’t stick, until all cranberries pop, about 5 minutes.
3-Stir in the Grand Marnier or other orange liqueur and simmer for an additional minute. If you like it sweeter, add more sugar with the liqueur. Pour into a bowl.
The Locavore Way? In my supermarket, I noticed bags of cranberries from far away Wisconsin mingled with those from eastern Massachusetts. So you’re aiming for a locavore’s sauce, read the tiny print on those bags.
Variation: For a free-form riff on Kissel, a Russian dessert, add 1/4 cup of room temperature cranberry sauce to small bowl or wine glass, then top with slightly sweetened whipped cream. Fresh, local cream can’t be beat.