cranberry mandarin sauce

Clearly there is some kind of rule that forbids you from eating turkey without cranberry sauce, and certainly you can’t eat a left over turkey sandwich without a good slather of said sauce, so it is pretty much written in stone that cranberry sauce is essential for a holiday meal. This year we are off to our friends house for a German Christmas feast, which means I am not making the turkey, but I have been asked to bring among other things, cranberry sauce, and obviously I have no intention of buying a can-o-cran! Cranberry sauce is so easy to make, there is no reason for those jelly cans to even live on the grocery store shelf.

I made a double batch of this sauce because I have tart dreams for some of it… you may opt to half this recipe.

In a large sauce pan over medium heat combine:

2 bags of fresh cranberries

2 cups of organic cane sugar

2 cups of organic orange juice

1 cup of water

2 mandarin oranges, peeled, separated and cut into 1 cm thick segments

1 cinnamon stick

1 tsp each: all spice, cloves and nutmeg (all fresh ground)

Simmer away pressing and crushing some of the cranberries with a potato masher while stirring often for about 20 minutes. Shut off heat to element, cover the pot and allow it to sit there for about 30 minutes. Stir and serve, or make this a few days ahead of the big day and keep in fridge.

*Alternatively…. once the sauce is to your consistency liking you can add a whole new deep flavour level to it by pouring it into an oven safe pan and slowly roasting it for a couple hours on a low heat in the oven. This is what I opted to do, after my fruit butter experiments in the fall, I found I really enjoy the concentrated fruit flavour and  thickness that comes with this extra step!

Either way this will beat any canned glop you find in the stores, and the mandarin is a lovely touch!

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