Sunday, November 06, 2005

Thanksgiving Side-Drunken Cranberries

I first had homemade cranberry sauce with Thanksgiving dinner in 1998. I was very apprehensive, because I’d only ever had the canned jellied cranberries, which I was fond of—and they still make a special appearance every year on the Thanksgiving table…love those ridges from the can! I was watching as they were made and thought that it was really cool watching these tart, hard little berries become this tangy classic side dish.

I began the following year’s Thanksgiving preparations by trying my own hand with homemade cranberry sauce. I wanted to try something a little special and decided to add two types of liquor.

The result was very good, but still more tart than I would have liked. The next year I tried adding a can of crushed pineapple to the cranberries. This was perfect! The crushed pineapple blends right into the dish, most people don’t even realize that it is there.

In the past, I made this recipe multiple times each season, once for a work holiday celebration, my own Thanksgiving dinner and another special dinner. It has been my experience that even non-cranberry eaters become fans of this great dish.

Note: It is my understanding that the alcohol content cooks away during the cooking process. But, not being a scientist, I don’t know if that is completely true.

Yield: Approximately 1 Quart (8 to 12 servings)
Cooking Time: Approximately 20 minutes

1lb Fresh Cranberries
¼ cup of bourbon
¼ cup of triple sec
1 orange, juiced—it’s ok if pieces and chunks are included, but no seeds.
1 lemon juiced—ditto
1 cup sugar
large (14-16oz) can of crushed pineapple
1/3 cup of the pineapple juice from the can

Combine bourbon, triple sec, sugar, orange & lime juice. Simmer until sugar is dissolved.

Add rinsed and cleaned cranberries. I remove any cranberries that are soft or damaged.

Stir into the sugar, coat all the cranberries. Continue to simmer, stirring frequently, until cranberries POP! (about 10 minutes)

Remove from heat and add crushed pineapple and it’s juice.

Stir until completely mixed.


For the cranberries, I buy them, a few bags prior to Thankgiving and I throw them in the freezer, where they freeze perfectly and last the full year. I’ve also popped out a few to use as garnish in Cosmopolitans!


DC Food Blog said...

I've had a friend make this as an appetizer. She put out a block of crema cheese and just slather the cranberry mixture on top. It's a great spread for crackers.

ScottE. said...

Ohhhh, or maybe some brie!?!?

ScottE. said...

HI! I made my Cranberries yesterday for Thanksgiving 2006. They were tasty. But I had to set them aside for Thursday. This year I added one pear, peeled, cored and chopped. Also added the zest from the orange and lemon. I think they are done--no more additions! So tasty.

ScottE. said...

I've gone another step further in the deliciousness...add a tsp of grated ginger! YUM!