Thursday, November 17, 2016

4 Ways to Make Cranberry Lovin' Compotes

Come October I'm ready to see the leaves turning their glorious splendor.  I'm fortunate to live overlooking the New Jersey Palisades which turn brilliant across the Hudson River and often the contrast of the warm yellows, oranges, and reds against the grayish but still sunny skies is incredible! But no doubt about it, my favorite season is autumn because of the foods, warm fires and sitting with friends enjoying each other's company which is some of the best things in life!  I always look forward to the change of seasons even though I'm sad to see summer leave so soon but I will miss those luscious fully vine ripened tomatoes sadly!

I have a long time love affair with cranberries, pumpkin, and the winter squashes.  Here are just a few of my many recipes for that help with my addiction to cranberry compotes.   Don't just think of them as a side to pork, turkey, chicken or even duck, but rather a tasty addition to some plain or vanilla yogurt or in a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  Be creative with these cranberry compote recipes!

You'll see that I love to save good glass containers to use over and over and may recognize these jars from a particular French jelly company.  Wash and sterilize them.  My favorite labels I order are Ball Labels from Amazon.  I love these labels because they remove easily and I even often cover the computer cameras with them when I'm not using video chat since they are so easy to use and remove cleanly.

Any of these recipes can be made with absolutely fresh cranberries or frozen whole cranberries.  No need to defrost when using the frozen.  I stock up in October to make sure I always have plenty of whole berries in the freezer.  Wrap them tightly in foil and a zip lock for longer term storage.  They will keep for 1 year in the freezer.

 My Favorite Cranberry Orange Pecan Compote



The Very Berry Basic Whole Berry Cranberry Compote

6 servings +

Ingredients

1 cup water
1 cup sugar
14 oz fresh whole cranberries

Preparation


Into a saucepan bring water and sugar to a boil. Add the cranberries and simmer till the berries start popping and liquid thickens. The liquid will thicken even more while cooling. Store in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator until you need to serve.



Beautiful plump raw right from freezer cranberries

The Uncanny Smooth  Style Jellied Cranberry Jelly 

6 servings +

Ingredients


1 cup water
1 cup sugar
14 oz fresh whole cranberries

Preparation

Bring water and sugar to a boil in a saucepan . Add the cranberries and simmer till the berries start popping and the liquid thickens.  Before allowing to cool down, strain the sauce using a wire strainer set over a bowl. Work carefully because those hot sugary syrups really can give quite a nasty burn. Once most of the liquid is strained out, then use a sturdy spoon to mash down the berries and get the remaining juices.  Don't forget to scrape the outside of the strainer to get all the fine pulp into the liquid in the bowl. The liquid will thicken more while cooling. Store in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator until you need to serve.


Shelled Pecans



                    

Fresh Oranges, peel with vegetable peeler but just the colorful part

My Favorite Cranberry Orange Pecan Compote

6 servings +

Ingredients


1 cup orange juice
1 cup sugar, white or light brown
3 - 1" wide strips of orange peel
14 oz fresh whole cranberries
2/3 cup chopped toasted pecans

Preparation

Into a saucepan bring orange juice and sugar to a boil.   Add the cranberries, orange peel, and simmer till the berries start popping and liquid thickens.  When ready to cool, thoroughly stir in the toasted pecans to spread evenly.  Leave the peel in or remove if you wish. The liquid will thicken more while cooling. Store in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator until you need to serve. Serving suggestion: top with some grated orange rind and sprinkled chopped toasted pecans. This will be colorful and let the guests know exactly what's in the compote.





Granny Smith Apples



Apple Lovin' Cranberry Compote

6 servings

Ingredients

1 cup apple juice or cider
1 cup sugar
1 medium to large granny smith apple
14 oz fresh whole cranberries
1 cinnamon stick

Preparation

Peel and chop the apple into roughly chopped chunks. These chunks will break down during cooking but smaller chop works best. It is fine to have some pieces larger so they show in the finished product.

Into a saucepan bring the juice or cider, cinnamon stick and sugar to a boil.  Add the cranberries, apples to pot and stir.  Simmer until the berries start popping and liquid thickens.  The apples will soften even more as the compote cools and the liquid will firm up while cooling completely. Remember to remove the cinnamon stick before serving.  Store in a tightly covered container in the refrigerator until serving.  This works very well with pork, chicken, turkey or duck.



             Apple Lovin' Cranberry Compote to gift