Author Notes: From whenever cranberries appear for sale. Garnish roast chicken or curry or slather on peanut butter or cheddar sandwiches. Add to your Thanksgiving or Christmas table as a replacement for or addition to traditional cranberry sauce. Or save for day-after sandwiches. Have made this often from original recipe by Emelie Tolley & Chris Mead in Herbal Pantry, 1992. Have found, through many iterations, that cranberries, fresh sage, crystallized ginger, sugar and cider vinegar are the 5 essentials. The other ingredients can be played as jazz riffs or omitted when the grocery store or cupboard are bare, and you'll still have a fine spread. —Nancy
Makes: 6 cups
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 20 min
cups cranberries, fresh or frozen (660g)
cups sugar (300g)
cup cider vinegar (120 ml)
cup crystallized ginger, chopped (25g)
tablespoons FRESH sage, chopped (6g)
Important additions (you can omit or vary them tremendously)
cups dried dates and raisins (total 200g)
cup almonds, slivered (25g)
orange, whole chopped (160g)
cup orange juice (250 ml)
teaspoon mustard seed, whole or ground (3g)
cup onion, chopped (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 fridge (6 mo) or freezer (one year) storage. 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.
- Variations: For almond, walnut or other to taste. For dates and raisins, other dried fruit, chopped if it comes in large pieces. For dried mustard, 1 tsp prepared. For orange and juice: other citrus (Meyer lemons especially good). For regular onion: shallot, spring onion, white part of leeks.