Cranberry Sauce

A bit of history first …

For Canadian immigrants in the 60’s, assimilation was the goal.

The ‘melting pot’ was a thing, and my brother and I adopted the Canadian life style with enthusiasm. So, a traditional Thanksgiving meal was one of the must have’s at our house.

Pumpkin pie and cranberry sauce weren’t a priority but the big turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy were front and center on our table. Stuffing … well my mom combined cooked rice, toasted and seasoned bread, sauteed onion and celery, turkey broth and turkey giblets into a dish that was the first thing I put on my plate. I even make it occasionally now that I’m doing all the cooking.

I think my mom must have bought canned cranberry sauce at some point. But I don’t remember. What I DO remember is that my nephew, a picky eater, HAD to have traditional jelly cranberry sauce. My SIL, may have even brought the can to our house to make sure that there were no tantrums in those early days. Watching that solid mass SLIDE out was a vivid memory. When they took leftovers home, the cranberry sauce was always included because no one at OUR house was a big fan.

Fast forward to the present and at the age of 61, I made my first batch of cranberry sauce, with whole berries.

Cranberry sauce

Cranberry Sauce – makes ~ 3 cups

12 oz/ 340 gm cranberries
1 cup white sugar
1 cup orange juice (or 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup orange juice)
1 tbsp of orange zest

In a medium sized saucepan over medium heat, dissolve the sugar in the orange juice. Stir in the cranberries and cook until the cranberries start to pop (about 10 minutes). Remove from heat, stir in the orange zest and place sauce in a bowl.

Cranberry sauce will thicken as it cools.

And you know what?

It’s pretty tasty.

Uses for leftover cranberry sauce

Yogurt and cranberry sauce – if you like fruit flavoured yogurt for breakfast, stir as much of the cranberry sauce as you like into some drained yogurt and dig in

A moist and tender batch of Yogurt & Cranberry muffins, from “Cook the Story”. Instead of the large size that the recipe suggested, I made a dozen medium sized muffins and used the rest of the batter to make a tray that can be cut into bars. For serving, I stirred some cranberry sauce into sweetened whipped cream.

Maybe I should try making a pumpkin pie next year.

A leftover meal that’s even better than the original … turkey drumstick, blue cheese polenta, giblet gravy, sauteed kale


6 thoughts on “Cranberry Sauce

  1. Happy Canadian Thanksgiving. I like cranberry jam with slices of turkey, but in general, I’m not a fan of turkey. I much prefer chicken or duck. One day I want to cook a goose.

  2. Ah, that tinned cranberry sauce! My Mom’s best friends were British and the Mom wasn’t much of a cook so tinned cranberry sauce was a staple. When I discovered that it also came with whole cranberries and we didn’t have to have that weird tin shaped sauce, we were all over it. I made my first cranberry sauce around 18, I found a recipe with orange juice as the sweetener, it was awesome.
    My folks were also firm believers when in Rome, and Mom diligently tried many ready-made Canadian foods but mostly we abandoned then cause Mom’s cooking was so much better.
    It looks like you had a good Thanksgiving. We had two turkey dinners and I didn’t have to cook either of them, I really am not fond of turkey leftovers so it was fine by me. Plus the houses we went to both are exceptional cooks.

  3. I hope you have spent a nice Thanksgiving day with all the special food you’ve cooked!
    I like cranberry jam (I bought it once or twice) but I’ve never tasted the sauce.

    1. I had a great Thanksgiving day (Oct 3 in Canada) and am re-purposing the leftovers. I was never a big fan of (canned) cranberry sauce before but the home made stuff is tasty and you can do a number of interesting things with it.

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