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Fresh Cranberry Sauce Recipes: Smooth. Chunky.

I love cranberry sauce. It's a must-have dish at any Thanksgiving table. Those bright perky red cranberries bring a hint of sweet-tart zing to anything on your plate.

Cranberry Perfection. The trick to really good cranberry sauce is keeping that sweet to zing balance in line. Too much sweet and it becomes a 'jam'. Too much zing and the tart flavor overpowers the palate. The goal: perfect zing with a balance of natural sweetness. Some like it chunky with peeks of whole berries and skin. Some like is smooth and jellied with no chunks at all. This year, please everyone with my two recipe versions for Fresh Cranberry Sauce: one smooth, one chunky. Super easy. Very few ingredients. If you have 15 minutes, you can have fresh cranberry sauce this Thanksgiving...

Can vs. Bag? I'll admit I grew up loving straight-from-the-can cranberry sauce, ring lines and all. It tasted super sweet (something most kids/teens crave) and it added some zest to my meal. And it's still fun to purchase a 'back-up' can of cranberry sauce on Thanksgiving (for sentimental value) but once I dig into my fresh made recipes...I never touch the can. It usually gets used once all the fresh stuff is gone and a few leftovers remain. The fresh stuff goes fast! So give your guests real cranberry sauce this Thanksgiving, not "canberry" sauce.

E-A-S-Y. Buy a bag (or two) of fresh cranberries this Thanksgiving. It's the easiest traditional dish you'll make!

Smooth vs. Chunky. I like both. But some people hate one or the other. So it's always a great idea to have both options. Cranberry Sauce is a perfect addition to all your Thanksgiving leftovers recipes, so don't worry about making too much cranberry sauce for your meal. Simply wrap up the leftovers post-meal and stick in the fridge. Use it on everything from leftover tempeh stuffing sandwiches to sweet potato-cranberry pita pockets. Yum.

Smooth vs. Chunky (pre-fridge firming):


Onto my recipes...

Smooth:

Smooth Citrus Cranberry Sauce
vegan, makes about 2 1/4 cups

1 bag whole cranberries, 12 oz.
1 1/4 cup fresh squeezed citrus juice (combo of tangerines and oranges)
2 Tbsp citrus zest
1 Tbsp arrowroot powder
1/2 cup evaporated cane juice crystals (vegan sugar)
1 1/2 Tbsp maple syrup
garnish: citrus zest

Directions:

1. Rinse your cranberries. Wash and zest your citrus until you get about 2 Tbsp zest.

2. Juice your citrus until you get 1 1/4 cups of juice.

3. Pour juice, sprinkle arrowroot powder and add vegan sugar into a soup pot over high heat. Dissolve the sugar and arrowroot.

4. Add the whole cranberries and bring to a bubbly berry-bursting boil.

5. Cover with lid or foil so berries don't burst in your face. Stir every few seconds.

6. Add in 1 Tbsp of citrus zest. Stir, mush around.

7. Wait until all the berries have burst and the liquid is a thick dark red chunky soup.

8. Remove from heat. Let cool for a minute.

9. Carefully add sauce to a high speed blender. Add maple syrup. Blend on low-med until completely smooth. (Proceed with extreme caution when blending still-warm liquids in a blender - never aim blender towards face.)

10. Pour into your serving dish, add citrus zest garnish, cover and place in the fridge to firm for at least 2 hours.

Pre-Firming in the Fridge:


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Recipe Version 2:

Chunky Lumpy Traditional Cranberry Sauce
vegan, makes 2 1/4 cups

1 bag whole cranberries, 12 oz.
3/4 cup water
1 orange or large tangerine, juiced (about 1/4 cup juice)
1 tsp citrus zest
1 cup evaporated cane juice crystals (vegan sugar)

Directions:

1. Rinse your cranberries. Wash and zest your citrus until you get about 1 tsp zest.

2. Juice your citrus, should be about 1/4 cup.

3. Pour juice, water and vegan sugar into a soup pot over high heat. Dissolve the sugar.

4. Add the cranberries and bring to a bubbly berry-bursting boil.

5. Cover with lid or foil so berries don't burst in your face. Stir every few seconds.

6. Add in 1 tsp of citrus zest. Stir, mush around.

7. Wait until all the berries have burst and the liquid is a thick dark red chunky soup.

8. Remove from heat. Let cool for a minute.

9. Pour into your serving dish, cover and place in the fridge to firm for at least 2 hours.

Chunky:


Add-in's and Modifications:

Chopped apples
Chopped pears
pureed fuyu persimmons
pear or apple juice instead of citrus
cinnamon
agave instead of maple syrup
blueberries added
whole chopped oranges added to chunky version



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