We are pleased as punch to welcome our guest poster, the fabulous Vanessa from 40Licious. She's an amazing cook who is famous for winging it. Where winging it means throwing in a little of this and little of that until something delectable is bubbling away on the stovetop.
In this case, it's Vanessa's' orange cranberry sauce with ginger.
Rating: 1/4 assed
Vanessa: This year I’ve been charged with bringing the cranberry sauce to the first-ever TG with my boyfriend’s parents. Though I gazed longingly at the plastic tub of ready-to-go cranberry-orange sauce at Trader Joe’s, I passed and decided it was infinitely better to at least attempt making something from scratch. Years ago, I made some insane cranberry-orange relish from the back of the bag of Ocean Spray Cranberries, so I gathered up the ingredients I thought I needed and headed back to the kitchen.
But there was no recipe for cranberry-orange anything on the back of the bag! And surfing around for it just left me cranky. (Please note that “cranberry” and “cranky” share the same root. This is not by accident.)
So here’s what I ended up doing. Please note most measurements are estimated, you just go on and be your own bad self with those. Also, try to use organic oranges and other ingredients when you can, it tastes soooooo much better.
Here's what you need and how you do it:
2 bags of fresh cranberries
A piece of ginger about half the length of your pinky (Ed. note: we used a bigger piece. The size of our actual pinky.)
An orange or two, peeled and chunked
2 cups sugar
1 cup water
Glass of wine or loaded eggnog (Ed. note: we used 1 cup red wine.)
In a blender or food processor with a metal blade, chop up the ginger, orange and one of the bags of cranberries.
Drink some of the wine or eggnog.
Place the cranberry mixture in a saucepan and add about a half cup of water. Add the other bag of cranberries, whole. Add the sugar.
Boil the hell out of it for about three or four minutes; keep stirring. If it looks like it’s too hot and about to burn, add a little more water. While you are doing this, you can drink some more wine or eggnog.
Taste it to see if it needs more sugar. If so, add some. What are you waiting for? Turn flame way down.
Finish your wine or eggnog.
Check your Facebook. But don’t get all caught up in that or your sauce might burn.
When the sauce becomes redder than blood, you can turn it off and just let it sit nicely until you are ready to serve or refrigerate.
Celebrate by pouring another glass of wine or eggnog.
(Ed. note: We skipped the blender/food processor step altogether and just boiled the cranberries and oranges whole. It kept the recipe simpler and left one less contraption to wash. Also, boil for approximately 15 minutes. The oranges add more moisture so you'll have to go longer than the Ocean Spray bag says to get a thicker consistency.)
For a printable version of this recipe, click here.