This post is late this evening because I had to pick up some canning supplies so I could put up today’s recipe as soon as I finished cooking.
About nine years ago, my friend Laurel gave me a big bag of cranberries she’d brought back from a Maine cranberry bog — and then, upon discovering I’d never made homemade cranberry sauce, gave me a recipe and instructions for making some.
I lost Laurel’s recipe in the Great Mac Crash of 2013, but I’d riffed on it in 2007 and had enough presence of mind to post it here.
I’m grateful for that. Laurel passed away in January. I think of her every year and smile as I listen for the berries to pop, remembering the day I stood in her kitchen in Tulsa as she explained the steps.
I smiled tonight, blinking back tears and remembering Laurel and thinking about how amused she would have been by the latest political revelations that were pouring into my Twitter feed as I stirred the sugar syrup.
I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I have and use it to make some happy memories of your own.
1 c. sugar
1 c. water
4 c. cranberries
2 apples, diced
1-2 c. other fruit (berries, grapes, or more apple if you like)
3/4 c. honey
Peel and chop apples. Wash cranberries and any other fruit you’re using. (I used grapes tonight because I had some on hand, but I’ve also used strawberries, blackberries and extra apples, all of which produced equally good results.)
Stir sugar into water and bring to a boil in a big saucepan, stirring frequently.
Add fruit, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring frequently. You’ll hear the berries pop as they cook. Remove from heat, stir in honey, and let stand to thicken.
Makes about 2 pints.
Cranberry sauce cans very well; just leave a half-inch of headspace and process for 10 minutes in a boiling-water bath. I made three batches tonight and put them up in wide-mouth pint jars.