How many cranberry sauces do you have on the table during your Thanksgiving dinner? Every year, we end up with a can-shaped blob of the processed stuff and, my favorite, the fresh, whole berry sauce. I’ve heard some families stock three varieties or more! Who would believe that cranberry sauce divides people more quickly than turkeys, stuffing, or even sweet potatoes?
Then again, there was a near riot when I announced I’d be making a sweet potato purée with bacon and homemade marshmallow topping at my [first family] Thanksgiving this year. Apparently only the bagged Jet puffed pillows will do.. Alas.
What Makes This Recipe So Good
I’ve developed this total obsession with rosemary this year, and for good reason. It adds this subtle herbed quality–wintry, yet tamed. It works perfectly in this homemade cranberry sauce, infusing the tart berries with a depth that you’ve never otherwise had. The use of fresh orange juice and zest balances the tartness with a sweet acidity, and I promise you..
you’ll never go back. You will ban can-shaped varietals from your table. You’ll make Aunt Susan cry–cry, I tell you–and it will be her fault. Why?!
Because how dare she insult your cranberried perfection with that Ocean Spray 3-for-$5 junk–you spit a little when you enunciate the end of this sentence, like you’re ridding your palette of a terrible taste. Oh … you are.
I started this post calmly and ended it in rosemary cranberry sauce evangelism, but you’ll understand when you make it. You really will.
You probably already have cranberries and oranges on your Thanksgiving shopping list, so toss a packet of fresh rosemary in your cart and thank me later. Or thank me in advance. I’m pretty confident about this one, you see..
- 12 ounces fresh cranberries rinsed well
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup orange juice or juice of one orange with enough water added to make ½ cup
- 3 1-inch long sprigs fresh rosemary wrapped in cheesecloth, tied with kitchen twine
- ½ teaspoon fine orange zest
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary to garnish
- kitchen twine
- medium saucepan with lid
- Wooden spoon
- large bowl with lid
- Add cranberries, sugar, orange juice, and wrapped rosemary to medium saucepan. Place saucepan over medium-high heat and stir constantly to incorporate ingredients. Keep end of kitchen twine out of saucepan so rosemary can be easily removed later. Bring mixture to gentle boil, then reduce heat to low.
- Simmer mixture over low heat 1 minute for more whole berries up to 5 minutes for fewer whole berries. Cranberries will burst as they cook, but you can speed things up by using back of wooden spoon to press berries against side of saucepan.
- When desired number of cranberries have burst, remove saucepan from heat. Stir in orange zest, then cover saucepan and set aside. Let sauce rest in covered saucepan 10 minutes.
- After 10 minutes, uncover saucepan. Use back of spoon to press wrapped rosemary against side of pan, extracting any remaining flavor. Remove wrapped rosemary from sauce and discard.
- Transfer cranberry sauce to large bowl. Let sauce cool to room temperature, then garnish with fresh rosemary and serve immediately. Alternately, cover bowl and refrigerate until 30 minutes prior to serving. Remove sauce from refrigerator let come to room temperature, then garnish with fresh rosemary and serve.
Number of total servings shown is approximate. Actual number of servings will depend on your preferred portion sizes.
Nutritional values shown are general guidelines and reflect information for 1 serving using the ingredients listed, not including any optional ingredients. Actual macros may vary slightly depending on specific brands and types of ingredients used.
To determine the weight of one serving, prepare the recipe as instructed. Weigh the finished recipe, then divide the weight of the finished recipe (not including the weight of the container the food is in) by the desired number of servings. Result will be the weight of one serving.