Cranberry Cheer

cranberry-port-sauceThe cranberry, a fruit native to America, brings a welcome splash of color to the Thanksgiving table each year. My berries usually come from eastern Massachusetts, even though Wisconsin is the nation’s leading cranberry producer. Americans everywhere crave cranberries at this time of year. Rushing the holiday season a bit, I made relish from Auburn, Alabama, published in the Gazebo I Christmas Cookbook, by Rex Barrington (1984). The port wine gives this sauce a more sophisticated flavor than the usual water-and-sugar formula. The relish certainly complements turkey, but it also tastes great as a topping for vanilla ice cream. Use your leftover relish for a midnight snack or make another batch for Christmas!

Spicy Cranberry Relish (1985)
Makes about 4 cups

1 cup sugar [or less to taste – I used 3/4 cup]
1 cup port wine
1/2 cup water
1 stick cinnamon
4 whole cloves
4 cups cranberries
4 thin lemon slices

  1. In a stainless steel pot, heat the sugar, wine, water, cinnamon and cloves. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer five minutes.
  2. Add the cranberries and lemon slices. Cook several minutes more until the cranberries pop open. Let cool and refrigerate until ready to serve.

About heritagerecipebox

I am named after my great-grandmother, who only prepared two dishes, according to anyone who remembers: hamburgers shaped like squares and peanut butter sandwiches. Fast forward 100 years and 500 miles north from my hometown of Richmond, Virginia to Boston, Massachusetts. Somehow, I ended up with a cooking gene as well as an interest in history and family stories. I have worked as a journalist and published three cookbooks plus a memoir. This blog gives me a chance to share family recipes and stories -- and other American recipes with a past. What do you have to share?
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