One of the things I really do prefer made from scratch rather than a can is
cranberry sauce. (You'll see plenty of other ingredients from a can later.
Not this time.)
When I was growing up, my mother found a recipe for "Cranberry-Orange
Relish" on the back of a bag of fresh cranberries. So we tried it out (one
of the not-so-many occassions I actually was involved in the kitchen as a
lad), and it became a tradition of sorts: Thanksgiving morning, I'd get
yelled at to get in the kitchen to help out, we'd take a couple halved
oranges and a couple bags of cranberries, dump in the food processor, and
then start adding sugar. Lots and lots of sugar. When we finally got it to a
taste that was deemed acceptable, it was gritty with undissolved sugar and I
was tired of the whole affair. The final part of the tradition was the
discovery that through too many tastings, we'd desensitized ourselves and it
was still supremely puckering to the ill-prepared diner.
I made it last year. In a moment of regret, I must say that it got forgotten
in the fridge. Made a good condiment for leftovers (especially turkey
I also made regular cranberry sauce, and it too, shamefully, was forgotten.
So I said "screw the relish!" this year, and just went for the sauce. Amanda
said she wasn't overly fond of the bits of skin and seeds in last year's
model, so I did it a bit differently. This recipe came off a bag of a major
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
1 12oz bag fresh cranberries.
Combine sugar and water and heat until boiling. Add cranberries. Reduce heat
and stir occassionally for 10 minutes.
That's about it.
This year I passed it all through a fine mesh strainer.
So there's the before:
And the after:
This left me with a bunch of cranberry pulp to pull out of the strainer, and
in a moment of frugality, decided to use it for mulch rather than tossing
them. Granted, they'd given their all, but in case the acidic content is
still too high, I dumped them in with my collection of dead strawberry
plants. (Note to self: Buy new strawberry plants)