Cranberry Apple Sauce - Brighten up those berries
I think the most unappreciated dish on Thanksgiving is cranberry sauce. People write articles upon articles about stuffing, mashed potatoes, and turkeys. Today I want to show you what cranberries can do. Yes I am one of those people that grew up on canned cranberry sauce and I freakin love it. I was about 12 when I tried it, funny thing was I was the only one that year that ate the cranberry sauce. Come to think of it my family never touched the cranberry sauce. It was there ceremonial dish on the table that signified Thanksgiving. Flipping through family photos of Thanksgiving gave me the idea to remake cranberries and make the cran sauce something everyone can look forward to.
The typical canned sauce is very firm and giggly and if that's what you are looking for this probably isn't the recipe for you. I decided to take it in a different direction. Tangy and sweet versus giggly and uneaten. I paired paired fresh cranberries with tart granny smith apples. You are probably thinking wow that is way too tart for my liking. Granny smith apples have a great texture and flavor to them when they are cooked, especially when they are cooked with sugar and cinnamon. Now you are starting to see where this is heading. Knowing me I couldn't just use plain old cinnamon I had to bust out my favorite year round spice blend, pumpkin pie spice. The ginger, nutmeg, and cinnamon would all be amazing with this sauce. It truly makes the apples shine and helps them not get lost in the cranberries.
For this recipe I used Evolution Apple Juice. This is some high quality juice not no made from concentrate juice. If you can't get your hands on some of this stuff, then I would suggest using a high quality apple cider. Whole Foods has some great options for both. This is an ingredient that really makes the dish so remember when Thanksgiving Shopping don't forget juice.
The rest of the ingredients are pretty straight forward. Once made the flavor really intensifies so you can make these about 2 days ahead or you can do it the day of which I like to do. The recipe makes enough to feed a large dinner party or enough to bring to a Thanksgiving meal you are attending and keep some in the fridge for leftovers and turkey sandwiches.
As the big day draws near I am saddened to not be able to spend my favorite holiday with my family and loved ones. So this blog allows a way for me to share my dishes with all of you. It's hard not get a little down and out during the holidays in a new town. Moving was big, bright, and exciting until a special occasion came up. Living in Hawaii was special all my friends and family were no more than an hour drive away. The hour was only due to traffic. If you haven't had the pleasure of sitting in Honolulu traffic consider yourself lucky. Being in San Francisco is so exciting but also soooo depressing. I see and hear the crowds around the city already buzzing with holiday excitement and we are two weeks out. I don't find myself missing home to much until days like this. Hearing my family talk about their meal planning for the big day. Im usually right there in all the action.
So Im asking you, my few readers what do you guys do when you find yourself alone during the holiday season? I've heard about Friendsgiving but I don't have any friends yet in the city either. Im not trying to bring down the holiday spirit, just genuinely looking for solutions. Even in college in a far off city I had roommates that were kind enough to include me with their holiday plans. Now a grown up in my own place, I trying to avoid a Hallmark movie playing out in my living room. So leave comments, suggestions, what to do in a new city with no family or loved ones around?
Cranberry Apple Sauce
12 oz offresh cranberries
1 cup of Evolution apple juice or apple cider
½ lemon juiced and zested
2cups of Granny smith apples – cored, peeled, and diced small
1 teaspoon of pumpkin pie spice
2 cups of ultra fine granulated sugar
1. In a large saucepan place cranberries, sugar, lemon juice, zest, and apple juice. Bring up to medium high heat while stirring constantly. After 10 minutes the cranberries should be tender. The mixture will be bubbling and may spit out hot lava like sugar and juices be careful. Using the back of the spoon or spatula gently press a cranberry against the side of the pot. It should easily smash.
2. Add in apples and pumpkin pie spice. Cook for about 10 more minutes. Again stirring constantly. The apples should still be solid but tender. The mixture should have thicken considerably but not be a solid.
3. Remove from heat and pour into a heatproof container –ceramic I find works best. Let cool before storing or serve immediately. The sauce will thicken considerably after cooling. Store in the fridge.