Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Last-minute Thanksgiving Recipe

The past couple of years, I've made creamed corn and pumpkin bread for the office Thanksgiving potluck. This year, I wanted to bring something different, but it also had to be something quick, cheap, and easy. While browsing through All Recipes (my favorite go-to resource), I came upon this recipe for cranberry sauce. Obviously, cranberry sauce is not a new concept to the Thanksgiving menu, but I've never tried making it before. This recipe sounded too easy to pass up (or screw up). And it only took three ingredients, two of which I already had on hand. Here's my experience:

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, dissolve 1 cup sugar in 1 cup orange juice.

If I'm not mistaken, a lot of cranberry sauce recipes just use water and sugar, so I think the orange juice adds a little something special here. And of course, cranberry & orange is a great flavor combo anyway.

Stir in 12 ounces of cranberries and cook until the cranberries start to pop (about 10 minutes). 

This part of the recipe was a little alarming to me, having never cooked cranberries before. What happens when cranberries pop? Would they explode and squirt scalding cranberry juice in my face? Would this require some form of protective eyewear? I decided to err on the side of caution and just covered my pot with a lid. Sure enough, after a few minutes, I began to hear popping noises. It wasn't as scary as I thought it would be, but definitely noticeable. I moved the lid aside just enough to stir them around every once in awhile.

Remove from heat and place sauce in a bowl. Cranberry sauce will thicken as it cools.

I took the pot off the burner after about 12 minutes, when I wasn't hearing any more popping, and it appeared that most of the cranberries had burst. The sauce looked frothy and runny.

After my taste test, I'd say it was a success! Tart yet a little sweet, and you can taste the hint of orange. I spooned it into a white bowl to set off the red color. This cranberry sauce would make a great addition to any Thanksgiving or Christmas table! In my opinion, much better than cranberry sauce out of a can (not that there's anything wrong with that).

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!  Stretchy pants, here I come!

* Notes: I bought the bag of Ocean Spray fresh cranberries in the produce section, but there might be frozen ones, too. Also, I doubled the recipe (2 cups/2 cups/24 oz).


dolores @ Welcome to My Humble Ablog said...

Ooh that looks scrumptious! I'm trying out a new (and easy) recipe myself (wish me luck!).

And thanks for the stretchy pants reminder! I hear empire dresses do the trick too!

Danielle and Clint said...

I love the color of cranberries with a Thanksgiving meal! Happy Thanksgiving Amanda!

The Brick Cottage said...

Allrecipes is the best! I spend way too much time browsing that site. I bet your house smelled delicious while the cranberries were cooking. mmm...

Oonafey said...

I will definitely have to make a note to try this next year. My grandmother always has cranberry sauce out of a can and it's gross...

Sara @ Russet Street Reno said...

I totally cracked up when you were wondering about protective eyewear! Too funny.


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