The Flavor of the Holidays
Cranberries have signified the Autumn and Winter holidays for centuries. These tart red berries are in season in Fall and early Winter, which is a great time to consume their antioxidants to boost your immune system. And the pop of red looks so festive and joyful. So what better way to celebrate this season around the dinner table than with homemade cranberry sauce? Now, it came as a shock to me that some folks actually prefer canned cranberry sauce over the homemade stuff! But the warm, rich scent that will fill your home is reason enough to make this recipe! So maybe keep the canned cranberry sauce on the grocery shelf this year, and make a batch at home.
Cranberry sauce has a wonderfully tart flavor that is balanced with sweetness from sugar. Orange juice and zest bring out the citrus flavor and give it a bolder fruity taste. And a dash of ground cloves adds a cozy bit of warmth in each bite.
What do you eat cranberry sauce on? EVERYTHING! Turkey, mashed potatoes and stuffing are great go-to’s. But try it on toast, yogurt and pancakes – I bet you’ll be pleasantly delighted!
Making Cranberry Sauce at Home
First, when you make homemade cranberry sauce, you’ll be creating a simmer pot that fills your home with the scent of sweet cranberries, fruity oranges and spicy cloves. It’s like the best form of aromatherapy, because you get to eat jam at the end!
Second, you’ll get a punch of antioxidants from the cranberries, without any preservatives and additives from store-bought cranberry sauce.
Third, this recipe is so simple! All you need is some cranberries, an orange, water, sugar and a half teaspoon of ground cloves. And the cloves are optional; I just like the extra spiced Autumn flavor it adds.
A Thanksgiving Feast
Cranberry sauce is traditionally eaten at Thanksgiving here in the U.S. Whether you celebrate Thanksgiving or not, it’s a festive and delicious addition to any holiday meal. Here are some more recipe ideas for the holidays!
– Vegan, Raw, No Bake Pumpkin Pie
– Turkey Stuffed Squash
– One Pot Thanksgiving Turkey & Stuffing
– Turkey Bacon & Sage Cornbread Stuffing
– Carrot Galette with Carrot Top Pesto
– Braided Cranberry Cinnamon Roll Wreath
– Mashed Potatoes and Onion Gravy
Homemade Cranberry Jam/Sauce
- 2 cups cranberries (fresh or frozen)
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup water
- ¼ cup orange juice, freshly squeezed
- 1 Tbsp orange zest, freshly grated
- ½ tsp ground cloves
- Add all the ingredients into a sauce pan. Bring everything to a boil on medium-high heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved.
- Reduce the heat to a simmer for about 20 minutes, until all the cranberries pop and break down. If any cranberries remain whole, crush them with the back of a spoon.
- Optional: strain the jam through a fine mesh sieve. (I personally like the extra texture from the whole cranberries, so I don't strain my jam.)
- Let cool and enjoy!