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Author Notes: Here's a hearty alternative to traditional cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving. I adapted this recipe from a number of recipes; the finishing touch , Calvados, was politely lifted from an epicurious recipe. So was the idea of adding the cranberries to the compote in stages so you get different levels of texture. But seriously, it was too good to hold back. I don't need credit; just enjoy it.
Growing up in a family who could take - or - leave cranberry sauce, usually in the fridge until discovered the next day, this is now a family tradition. The recipe makes tons; I eat it with cottage cheese and toast in the mornings following Thanksgiving. —GreenKitchen
Serves crowds (15+ for thanksgiving dinner)
- 24 ounces Fresh cranberries (2 bags)
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 1/2 turbinado sugar
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1 to 2 apples (1 large Gala or 2 small fuji or pink lady)
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg (or more if purchased ground)
- 1/2 cup toasted, cooled walnuts
- 1 to 2 tablespoons Calvados or brandy. Calvados is is an apple brandy
- 1 rounded tablespoons orange zest
- Place the cinnamon stick, allspice, sugar and 1 bag (12 oz) of cranberries in a heavy saucepan with the water; cook over moderate heat. Stir occasionally until you hear some of the cranberries start to pop. x Tastes good cold, hot, warm, room temp...you get the picture. NOTE:
- Add 1/2 of the second bag of cranberries (6 oz) and simmer for an additional 5 minutes, stirring occasionally
- Peel and core the apple(s) and dice into small pieces, about the size of your pinky nail. Add to the cranberry mixture along with the rest of the crannies and the walnuts.
- Add the 1/4 cup of orange juice and the orange zest. Cook for another 5 minutes.
- Add the Calvados cooking another minute until blended.
- Remove from heat and remove the cinammon stick.
- NOTE: Feel free to make this sweeter. We don't like it overly sweet, though I know the kids might eat more of it if it were sweeter. Let it cool and taste it. If it needs more sweet, place a 1/4 cup sugar with 1/2 cup water until sugar dissolves; then mix it and let it sit for a few days. By the way, I usually make this a week in advance. It lasts for weeks.