No matter your thoughts and feelings about canned cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving, you have to admit it has a singular ability that is both fascinating and a little repellant.
I am speaking, of course, of the ability to slide out of the can completely intact in one fell swoop, and stand alone as a quivering magenta tower on a plate.
There’s something vaguely disturbing about watching your food being birthed wholesale from its packaging in this fashion. Something, dare I say, un-CAN-ny? Or something just a little too reminiscent of dog food, perhaps. And while we’re on the subject, what’s IN that stuff? I’ll tell you: a whole lotta high fructose corn syrup (and possibly some kind of food lab Jell-O product they can get away with calling “natural flavor”?) I honestly don’t mind the taste of the classic straight-from-the-can Ocean Spray jellied sauce, but Real Talk: it’s not exactly made of wholesome ingredients, and it’s not the classiest item on the Thanksgiving table, with its sklooshy jiggle and the grooves around its circumference that give it away as canned every time.
So, this Thanksgiving, might I suggest a detour from the can? This homemade orange cranberry sauce is sweetened naturally with honey (not high fructose corn syrup like the wiggle-jiggle variety) and will give your Thanksgiving table a touch of class and a colorful sweet-tart pop. Plus, it’s super easy and smells AMAZING as it cooks. It’s even fun to make because you get to hear the ping! of the cranberries as they burst in the saucepan.
So go ahead and be the superstar of your Thanksgiving gathering by bringing this wholesome, delicious knockout. My guess is you’ll never go back to the canned variety again.
Honey Orange Cranberry Sauce
- 12 oz. fresh cranberries
- 1 stick cinnamon
- 1 pinch cardamom
- 1/2 c. honey
- zest and juice of 1 orange (about 1 1/2 Tbsp. zest and 1/2 c. juice)
- In a saucepan over medium heat, bring all ingredients to a boil and cook about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until cranberries have burst and sauce has thickened to your liking.
- Remove cinnamon stick and let cool. Serve immediately or store refrigerated in an airtight container.