Have you ever noticed that the mere mention of Thanksgiving food can divide a room, a friendship, even a family? People quickly begin to take sides and defend their favorites: oven-roasted turkey vs. deep fried, stuffing vs. dressing, sweet potato pie vs. pumpkin, canned cranberry jelly vs. fresh cranberry sauce. It's OK to pick sides today; we are not here to judge!
We are here, though, to share our favorite cranberry side -- a fresh cranberry sauce that includes both dried, sweet cherries and port wine. It's perfectly tart, it's perfectly sweet. And, the port wine brings all of the flavors together as though cranberries and cherries have been Thanksgiving friends forever. This sauce is just as good served with a slice of turkey as it is spread on a warm roll; we've also been known to eat it with a spoon straight from the bowl. Cheers to Thanksgiving traditions and the ones who dare to change..errr...enhance them. :)
p.s. Here's a fun read for all of you canned cranberry jelly fans: The history of cranberry in a can.
Cranberry Sauce with Cherries & Port
recipe by Maureen Callahan via Cooking Light
2 cups fresh cranberries (about 8 ounces)
3/4 cup dried sweetened cherries
3/4 cup port wine
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Add all of the ingredients to a medium saucepan; bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar dissolves.
Once the sugar dissolves, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer 5 minutes or until cranberries begin to pop. Cool slightly before serving.