There are a lot of foods I love at Thanksgiving: sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, pumpkin pie, pecan pie. But perhaps my favorite is cranberry sauce. No, I am not talking about that Jell-O-esque stuff that comes in a can, I’m talking about actual cranberry sauce. Made from actual cranberries.
I don’t want to hate on the canned stuff, but seriously? This is an entirely different experience. I probably ate a cup of it for breakfast this morning. By itself. And my family thinks I’m super weird because I put it on rolls or biscuits and eat what my mom calls “cranberry sandwiches” on Thanksgiving. Whatever. It’s no weirder than my brother eating 12 pieces of turkey, a plain roll and nothing else.
In addition to the cranberries, a key ingredient is sugar. I like my cranberry sauce tart and sweet at the same time — you may want to use a little less sugar if you are the kind of person who eats lemons as if they are oranges (as opposed to the type of person who considers an enormous marshmallow a perfectly reasonable snack).
Speaking of oranges, you’ll need one of those for this, too. You just peel and quarter it, then throw the quarters in the pot with the cranberries. You throw them away later.
A note on the cranberries: It is really easy to buy a bunch of bags at a time and freeze them, but you will need to rinse and pick through the cranberries a bit at some point. If you pour the frozen berries into a measuring cup or bowl, a little at a time, you can rinse them and remove the random stems.
I have seen some other cranberry sauce recipes out there that I want to try, but this is the one I grew up with and that I have been making for years. I hope you like it! Have a great Thanksgiving!
1 12-ounce bag cranberries
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
Rinse and pick through the cranberries. Place the water and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. While waiting for the water to boil, peel and quarter the orange.
Once water is boiling, add cranberries and orange quarters to the pot and stir. When the mixture boils again, reduce heat to low and cook for 5-10 more minutes, until the berries have all popped.
Allow mixture to cool, then squeeze oranges into sauce and then discard. Chill cranberry sauce before serving.