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    « Spiced Pickled Seckel Pears packed in pints. Try saying THAT three times! | Main | I'm having my own little Fermentation Festival.... »
    Sunday
    Oct312010

    Before we talk turkey, we need to have a chat about cranberries.

     4 pounds of fresh cranberries.

    5 great reasons to cook with cranberries today:

    1.) They're in season.

    2.) Locavores love them. (They are grown in Washington!)

    3.) Packed with nutrition, they are high in vitamin C and in fiber.  Like their relative the blueberry, cranberries also contain antioxidants in abundance which have antibacterial effects on the body.

    4.) Studies show consuming cranberries can prevent dental plaque and periodontal disease.

    5.) Cranberries are easy to prep for cooking. No scrubbing, no peeling, no pitting.


    They're not always easy to find at your local Farmer's Market, but most grocery stores have them, and if you look, you can find some super deals on them, like "buy one bag, get one free". I paid about $2.00/lb for mine.

    One of my favorite things: Homemade Cranberry Sauce

      Cranberries are versatile. Besides this very familiar preparation -- traditional Cranberry Sauce -- they can be used raw in relishes, dried in pastries, and candied in desserts. They make fabulous juice, which can easily be turned into syrups or liqueurs. If you choose to cook them whole, they are high in natural pectin, which means they thicken nicely, especially when used for making preserves. Jelly, chutney and jam is a cinch.

     

    Delicious when paired with a hearty Spinach Salad. (This one was made with whole spinach leaves tossed with a warm Feta Cheese~Sherry Vinegar mixture, then topped with poached (then shredded) Chicken Breasts, and sauteed Shallots, Red Onions & Mushrooms.)

    I'm making a few batches of traditional Cranberry Sauce now, with the best freshest local cranberries, and preserving them in shelf-stable jars. This way I can eat my beloved Cranberry Sauce all year 'round.

    Check out my new Cranberry "3 Ways" classes by clicking here!

    Added bonus? The fun Rice Krispy'ish "Snap-Crackle-Pop" sounds

                                 that the whole cranberries make when they're cooking!

    ~~~~~~~~~

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    Reader Comments (2)

    I came upon your post from the fermentaition festival. Wish I could have been there. I would like to suggest a cranberry/plum chutney. Use your favorite chutney recipie using fresh cranberries and plums as the main fruit (apples too). We made some this year for an early turkey dinner and it was a smashing success.

    November 2, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterCraig

    Craig -- thanks for taking the time to look at my website and for sending me your suggestion. I appreciate it so much.
    I didn't realize how much I loved plums until I started using them in preserving. They play so well with others. I have a Spicy Cranberry Chutney recipe I am getting ready to post soon (with oranges, ginger & jalapeno) but I am going to make a point of picking up some plums and trying your idea soon...it sounds dee-licious. I
    don't think I can ever have TOO MANY chutney recipes!
    Have a great day,
    Brook

    November 3, 2010 | Registered CommenterBrook Hurst Stephens
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