I whole-heartedly and unabashedly love cranberry sauce. And if I didn’t have to show a shred of consideration for my fellow Thanksgiving diners, I can promise I’d tuck that ruby red berry bowlful under my arm and head for the hills, spoon in hand.
And this year I just might.
But not before I share my favorite recipe with you. This tried and true berry sauce is tart, zesty, and bright from simmering in a pot with fresh orange juice. It’s jellied yet pleasantly plump with whole berries. It’s magenta on fire.
Here’s how I make it year after year:
In a small saucepan, set over medium heat, dissolve 3/4 cup sugar in 1 cup of 100% pure, freshly squeezed orange juice with 2 teaspoons orange zest.
Bring that to a simmer.
Pour in a full 12 oz bag of fresh cranberries.
Now bring the berries to a simmer and let them cook for 10 minutes, reducing the heat to medium-low if they begin to bubble too furiously.
You’ll know they’re done when they all begin to pop open, and the mixture thickens slightly.
Remove from heat and pour the berries into a non-reactive bowl. They will thicken significantly as they cool.
Cranberry sauce can be made up to a week ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator. I like to store it in old, cleaned out jam jars. I especially like the Bonne Maman jars for their red plaid caps.
Cranberry Orange Sauce
1 cup pure, freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tsp orange zest
3/4 cup granulated sugar
12 oz fresh cranberries (1 standard sized bag)
In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, heat the orange juice and zest. Add the sugar and stir to dissolve. Stir in the cranberries and bring the mixture to a simmer. Cook until the cranberries begin to pop (about 10 minutes). Remove the pot from heat and pour into a bowl. Cranberry sauce thickens as it cools.