I have to admit, growing up I had a love/hate relationship with the canned cranberry sauce that graced our table every Thanksgiving. I actually liked the flavor, but wasn’t too sure of the texture. This spiced cranberry orange is gently sweetened with an unrefined sweetener to help mellow the tang of the tart cranberries and oranges. Cinnamon gives warming balance to the brightness of the fruit, and you have the choice of leaving the fruit whole and unblended or making it as smooth as silk. I love the smooth sauce-y texture. There is no hate in this relationship; it is all love. Plus it is very easy to make!
We have some friends over the other night, and we spooned it all over our roast chicken slices, and then over our vanilla ice cream later. It was good both ways. I will be making a second batch to share on Thanksgiving to go with the turkey.
Oh, and the way, this is going to pinned to my pinterest board for Thanksgiving and Christmas. I plan on pinning more to it in the upcoming days (especially favorite recipes), but I have a fun start already!
Spiced Cranberry Orange Sauce
Yield: About 2 cups
I used just cinnamon to spice this sauce, and I thought it offered the perfect amount of spice without overwhelming the other flavors. However, you could certainly add whole cloves, and/or a sprinkle of nutmeg (just make sure you remove the whole cloves before blending!).
12 ounces of fresh cranberries, rinsed (remove any shriveled ones)
2 large oranges
½ cup of water
1 cup of whole cane sugar, coconut sugar, or sugar of choice
2 cinnamon sticks
1. Peel the orange, and remove any seeds. Dice and place in a small/medium pot. Take a 1-inch piece of the orange peel and slice into three thin pieces. Add to the pot along with the cranberries, water, sugar of choice, and cinnamon sticks. Bring to a simmer over high heat, turn heat to low, and simmer gently for 15-20 minutes. Remove the cinnamon sticks and orange peel. Let cool.
2. You can choose to keep the sauce unblended, which will be whole cranberries and orange chunks in a sweet, flavorful syrup. Or you can choose to make a smooth sauce as detailed below.
3. To make it smooth, place in a blender (don’t blend when very hot, otherwise it could splatter and cause burns). Blend thoroughly. If you have a high-powered blender, it should get smooth enough simply by blending. But before I had a good blender, I wouldn’t get it quite smooth enough for my taste, so I would stir it through a fine sieve set over a heat safe bowl.
4. Chill completely before serving. Keeps up to one week.