Like any cranberry sauce, this tastes best if it has a chance to sit for at least three or four days. I’ve revised this recipe to simplify it a bit, but I do recommend making it a minimum of two days before serving. In a pinch, you can make it the night before, but it won’t be quite as tasty.
Please note that the cook time of 35-40 minutes is spread out over several sessions.
I use a few tablespoons of this as the base for one of my favorite vinaigrettes, adding red wine vinegar, olive oil and salt to taste. It's perfect for Thanksgiving weekend salad - especially a Waldorf-y turkey salad made with celery, apple, parsley and toasted walnuts., and a small dollop of mayo to hold it all together. ;o) —AntoniaJames
12 ounces organic cranberries, picked over and rinsed
¾ cup brown sugar, packed (or more to taste)
3 nice quality, fragrant bay leaves
½ cup dried tart cherries
¼ cup Zante raisins (sold as currants” in the U.S.)
Put the dried fruit and bay leaves in a medium-sized, heavy, non-reactive saucepan with 1 ½ cups of filtered water. Bring to a boil, then immediately reduce the heat and let simmer for about 10 minutes. Turn off the heat, cover the pan, and let it sit for at least another 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, coarsely chop half of the cranberries. A few pulses in a food processor, or simply rough chopping with a knife, will do.
When the soaking dried fruit have sat for at least 10 minutes, add the chopped cranberries and sugar. Simmer for 8-10 minutes, stirring frequently, to prevent scorching and to ensure that the sugar dissolves. Cool, cover and refrigerate overnight, or up to 4 days.
A day or so before you want to serve it, bring the sauce to a boil, add the remaining cranberries, turn the heat down and simmer for 5-10 minutes. Test for sweetness, adding more sugar if necessary, simmering for another 5 minutes if do, stirring frequently.
Cool, remove the bay leaves, cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before serving.
If there are any leftovers, store in a tightly lidded container. This will hold for another week or so in the fridge.
When I'm not working (negotiating transactions for internet companies), or outside enjoying the gorgeous surroundings here in the San Francisco Bay Area, I'm likely to be cooking, shopping for food, planning my next culinary experiment, or researching, voraciously, whatever interests me. In my kitchen, no matter what I am doing -- and I actually don't mind cleaning up -- I am deeply grateful for having the means to create, share with others and eat great food. Life is very good. ;o)