Introduction: Cranberry Sauce

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This is a recipe for cranberry sauce made from fresh cranberries. It can be made in about 2 hours, or done ahead of time, and then served as a favorite side dish to any Thanksgiving or Christmas meal.

Cranberry sauce made from fresh cranberries, as opposed to the stuff bought in a can, is awesome. It's a bit tart, which means that it's got a kick, and that can be a nice feature that stands out to the palate among the other flavors of the typical Thanksgiving meal. I like to serve a fresh cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving and the canned sweet stuff that you can get in the supermarket and have the best of both worlds.

Step 1: Ingredients

Fresh homemade cranberry sauce requires only a few ingredients:

  • 12 oz fresh whole cranberries
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup water
  • zest from 1/4 lemon
  • zest from 1/2 orange

Step 2: Rinse the Cranberries

Rinse the cranberries in a colander under cool running water. Pick off any stems that are still attached to the cranberries.

Step 3: Combine Ingredients

Combine the water, sugar, cranberries and orange juice into a 3 qt. pot and bring them to a boil. Turn the heat down to a simmer. Zest 1/2 the skin of an orange and 1/4 of the skin of a lemon into the pot.

Step 4: Simmer

Let the cranberries simmer on low for 30 minutes. During this time the water will cook off, and the cranberries will release their pectin, which will turn the water liquid into more of a jelly.

Step 5: Cool and Refrigerate the Sauce

Once the cranberry sauce has cooked for 30 minutes and the water has cooked off, it's time to cool it down and then place it into the fridge to set up. You can serve the cranberry sauce once it's been cooled in the fridge for about an hour, or you can make the whole dish ahead of time and serve it when you like.

Step 6: Serve

Spoon cranberry sauce into a bowl, give it a quick mix, eat and enjoy.