this week of snow has thrown me off entirely…
i’m not completely sure what day of the week it is, whether i’m overdue to hang stockings and decorate a tree… or wait next week is thanksgiving. so the calendar says.
and so sayeth the ladies of the recipe redux.
they have challenged us this month, to lighten or “redo” a favorite family recipe. one that has been served around our family tables at thanksgiving. that brings with it fond memories.
as a child, thanksgiving was always shared with my dad’s family. we were mostly all closely scattered in texas. usually it was at our house… (except that one year it was at my dad’s brother’s house. my uncle deep-fried a turkey and i shot my cousin in the back of the leg with a paint gun pellet. he stood out in a field and he bet me i wouldn’t hit him. i won.)
my mother is an excellent cook. i credit her for my skills and love of cooking. we talk every day and a healthy percentage of the phone time is spent talking about food. she always made a killer thanksgiving spread, effortlessly.
there was one “fruit salad” that still holds a special place in my heart… with mandarin oranges, coconut, maraschino cherries, and pineapple. similar to this mandarin orange fruit salad, except we used cool whip. we recently retired that one. it’s so sweet and horrible that it is amazing. but i couldn’t bring myself to even attempt to lighten it. you know, the whole “arranging deck chairs on the titanic.”
as our palates matured with us, we came across this delicious cranberry & dried cherry sauce.
i love this stuff. i make it every year for my own crew, but i’ve always thrown in pecans. as luck has it though, i’m the only one in my family that will eat it. my husband is one of those that can’t stand fruit with meat. therefore, the whole dish is pretty much mine… i’m holding out that my daughter will join me as she gets bigger.
the original recipe, while delicious, is quite sugar-laden. my goal was set… no refined sugars. so i’ve used unsweetened juice and off-set the tart with coconut sugar. i’m happy to report, it’s just as tasty as, but less tooth-achingly sweet than the original.
thanks, but i’ll save my thanksgiving sugar quota for the pie!
Dried Cherry Cranberry Sauce
Yield 8 servings
- 2 cups unsweetened organic cranberry juice (such as Knudsen's Just Cranberry)
- 1 1/4 cups organic coconut sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
- 1/4 teaspoon allspice
- 1/2 pound (a rounded cup) organic dried cherries
- 12 ounces fresh organic cranberries
- 1 cup chopped, toasted pecans
- Combine first 4 ingredients in a medium saucepan; heat until mixture comes to a simmer and sugar dissolves.
- Add remaining ingredients and cook, just at a simmer for 5 minutes, or until cranberries pop.
- Remove from heat, cover and let cool for 30 minutes.
- Transfer to a bowl, remove and discard cinnamon stick, and chill until ready to serve.