Make whenever cranberries appear in the markets. If made well before Thanksgiving, store in freezer or fridge a few months. Defrost day before you want to use. Serve with the main meal or save for day-after turkey sandwiches. The whole recipe is wonderful but if you are making ten dishes for Thanksgiving and can't stand the idea of more shopping, the cranberries, sage, ginger, vinegar & sugar alone are enough to make a fine spread. Good in peanut butter sandwiches, or added to plain yogourt. Adapted from Emelie Tolley & Chris Mead in Herbal Pantry, 1992. —Nancy
6 cups or 3 pints
cranberries, fresh or frozen (660g)
1 1/2 cups
cider vinegar (120 ml)
crystallized ginger, chopped (25g)
FRESH sage, chopped (6g)
Important additions (you can omit or vary them tremendously)
1 1/4 cups
dried dates and raisins or other dried fruit (total 200g)
almonds, slivered or another nut (25g)
orange, whole chopped or other citrus (160g)
orange or other citrus juice (250 ml)
mustard seed, whole or ground or other hot spice (3g)
onion, chopped, or celery, fennel or garlic(80g)
Chop the orange and dates, combine all but 1 tbsp fresh sage in a medium size non-aluminum saucepan.
Over moderate heat, cook, stirring, until sugar dissolves.
Increase heat, cook, stirring until berries pop & mixture thickens slightly.
Add remaining tablespoon of fresh sage, cook 1 minute. Remove from heat.
Ladle into clean containers for storage in fridge (6 mo) or freezer (one year). Let cool. Put away in fridge or freezer.
If you like and have the equipment, sterilize, pack in canning jars and store at room temperature minimum 1 year.
Notes: if using dried fruit in large pieces, chop before adding to mixture. Instead of dried mustard, it's possible to use 1 tsp prepared, wasabi or horseradish. Shallot, spring onion, white part of leeks may be used instead of regular onion.