Cranberry Sauce and Emergency Food for the Kids

 I'm making Thanksgiving dinner again this year.  I like to do as much prep ahead of time as I can because I'll be hosting about 15 people.  Cranberry sauce is an easy menu item to prepare in advance.  This is the best cranberry sauce I've ever had and I make the same recipe each year.  I can it so I can give everyone some to take home so they can have it with their leftovers.

Put 2 cups of sugar in a heavy pot.  Add 1 cup of water, 1 cup port, 4 star anise and 2 cinnamon sticks.  Bring this to a boil and whisk until the sugar dissolves.

Add 6 cups of fresh cranberries.

Add the zest of 1 orange.

Add the juice from that orange.  Cook it until you hear the cranberries popping.  turn the heat off and stir.  You want some of the cranberries to remain whole.  Fill jars to 1/2 inch below the rim, add the lids and place them in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes.One Thanksgiving menu item down....about 50 more to go!

On occasional Tuesdays, a cook goes to the after school program to teach the kids how to cook something.  He was supposed to be there yesterday so I had not prepared food.  I got a call an hour before the kids arrived and was told that the cook canceled.  There was no food for the kids.  I quickly went through my food stash and put together a meat and cheese platter.  I found a loaf of frozen pumpkin bread, some frozen French bread, nuts, apricots and crackers.

I had jars of homemade pickles, homemade mustard and some sweet chili sauce I made recently.  My sausage hording finally paid off.  The kids loved it.


Anonymous said…
You are phenomenal.
Agnieszka said…
Thanksgiving is one thing we don't have in this country, but I like the idea of it a lot, and the traditional menu sounds sooo delicious. I love cranberry sauce, but have never made my own. You make it look really easy!
The JR said…
Almost unforgivable that the cook would leave the kids hanging like that. A very good thing they had a sweet loving person like you to look out for them.
Heritage Hall said…
You are an amazing marvel!! Bless you for
loving the Children so.
StrictlyMystic said…
I'll bet the kids appreciated that you pulled a last minute rabbit out of the hat. You're one of the good ones.
Last minute rabbit out of the hat? I thought those sausages were pork based!
Guillaume said…
Looks really yummy.
Gemmagirl said…
What a great idea to make a take home jar of cranberry sauce. Your guests are so lucky. Look forward to see more of your preps.
linda said…
The kids are so very fortunate to have you and your son in their lives. You are an amazing family. These are things they will never ever forget. You have instilled true values in their little hearts and souls. You are a saint gracing our earth. I mean it. You have opened your hearts to so many that I don't think you even realize what you are accomplishing. You are a gift to all of us who come to read your blog. It nourishes my soul. Linda.
Linda said it all! I think all of us who frequent your blog feel the exact same way. Well...okay..I don't think of you as a "Saint" :) but certainly a warm, caring soul and we love you. You once told me you loved giving back because you felt so much had come to you. You certainly do give back..and that is why we admire and love you.
Your whole family is amazing. Thank you for being out there!
1st Man said…
OMG I was JUST looking for a cranberry canning recipe to give as gifts! Am I right in guessing this amount made 12 jars (counting in your picture, ha). Thanks!!!
SantasHauntedB said…
You're a beautiful person. Simply put, you're absolutely magical.