Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Thanksgiving Prep Begins

This year I am hosting a big family Thanksgiving dinner.  I like to prepare as much in advance as possible and the cranberry sauce is usually the first thing I make.  I canned it this year since I made it more than two weeks in advance.
 I'll give you the recipe for one batch which makes about 3 pints.  Put 1-1/2 cups of sugar in a heavy pot.

 Add 1 cup of sugar, 4 star anise, 2 cinnamon sticks and 1 cup of good port.

 Bring this to a boil and boil it until the sugar dissolves.

 Add 3 cups of cranberries.

 Add the zest of one orange.

 Add the juice from that orange.  Bring it back to a boil.  You will hear the cranberries begin to pop.  Cook over medium heat for about 20 minutes until most of the cranberries have popped.  It will look thin but will thicken as it cools.  You can put this in an airtight container at this point and refrigerate it.  If you want to can it, add it to hot sterilized jars, wipe the rims and put the lids on.  Lower them into a pot of hot water and bring it to a boil.  Let them cook at a low boil for 15  minutes then remove them and sit them on a towel.  Let them cool.  You should hear the ping shortly after you remove them from the water.
 This is the best cranberry sauce I've ever tasted.  You can serve the leftovers on ice cream, on yogurt or on oatmeal.