Monday, November 20, 2023

The Great Cranberry Debate




HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN: I don’t understand cranberry sauce from a can. I know people love it, and they get those white and red tin cans, and open one end, and goosh out that cylindrical shape with the ridges encircling it. 

And then pretend it’s cranberries.

I know there are even MOLDS you can buy to make your homemade cranberries have ridges! 

A food found in nature would not behave like that. Cranberries are little round red things that, in the natural order of the universe, will just stay essentially little round red things, and not be tortured into some sort of forced aspic shape.

(And I know pumpkin pie does not look like a pumpkin, but let’s leave that for later since it’s not my point.)

Don’t get me wrong, I adore cranberries. Real cranberries,
put into a sauce pan with water and triple sec, and sugar and orange rind. And boiled, until they make simple syrup. Then poured into a crystal cut glass bowl and refrigerated and chilled until–voila. It becomes like a gorgeous chunky marmalade. Maybe add chopped walnuts.


This is a real plate from our last year's table. See the cranberries?

I have never tasted ridged cylindrical shaped/ produced from real-but-how-would -you-know cranberries. Is it like Jello? Or aspic? Or…those candies called Chuckles?

People seem to have opinions on this. What are yours, Reds and Readers?

Thursday, we will talk about stuffing. Dressing. Or whatever you call it. But today: ONLY cranberries. Or cranberry-type food items.

Let me take a moment to acknowledge the place where I live, now called Newton Massachusetts, was the home of the Massachusett tribe, for, according to some records, around 12,000 years.

LUCY BURDETTE: Hank! You’ve never tasted cranberry sauce from a can?? It’s the perfect accompaniment to Thanksgiving dinner. Period. I know people are very proud of their homemade cranberry sauce (Debs for example), but give me the jelly roll can with perfect ridges every time! I am going to spend my extra time saved by not making cranberry sauce on a mocha crunch pie.

Oh and I do adore Chuckles, but it’s more like grape jelly, only cranberry flavored if that helps?

RHYS BOWEN: Cranberry sauce is something I tend to forget to put on the table. I prefer the one with whole berries not the jellied tower of horror, but really if it’s not there I don’t notice. More important to me are stuffing and crispy roast potatoes, or creamy mashed potatoes and lots of lovely gravy.

Having not grown up with Thanksgiving I don’t obsess over all the required elements of the meal. Once I even served crab, much to the horror of our children.

DEBORAH CROMBIE: Do you know I don't think I've tasted the cranberry in a can since I was a child? I think I might have liked it then. I also remember there being some kind of relish on the TG table that I thought was gross, but I have no idea what the recipe had in it.

But somehow between then and now I fell hard for cranberries–the real berries that pop when you cook them and make the most gorgeous mess. (Do not splatter on clothes, however!) Of course you have to sweeten cranberries or you would be permanently puckered. The recipe I love calls for honey (along with jalapeno, loads of orange zest, black pepper, and vinegar) but I usually add a couple of teaspoons of brown sugar, too. It is my favorite thing on the entire table and sometimes the only thing I actually cook because I can't envision Thanksgiving without it.


JENN McKINLAY:
Give me the jiggly tower of horror! I have never tasted a cranberry relish that I liked. Ick. Bleck. Nope. Also, I need it to stay in can shape for easy slicing. And when you make a turkey and stuffing sandwich the next day there is no substitute for the smear of cranberry jelly on the bread to bring all the flavors together! Yum!!!

JULIA SPENCER-FLEMING: I hate to pile on, Hank, but I, too, use the canned stuff - although not the jiggly jelly. I buy the whole berry cranberry sauce, and if I’m feeling ambitious (and haven’t mucked up the timing so I’m cooking eight dishes at the same time) I’ll stir in some fresh orange segments and add a little mace or something.

The fact is, no one in my family really likes cranberry relish, so it’s pretty much out there for the guests. If they want some fancy recipe that starts with them wading through the bogs in Wareham, Mass, they can make and bring it themselves.

HALLIE EPHRON
: YAY for the canned whole berry sauce!! I have *4* cans of it just in case the store runs out. And it’s *essential* for turkey and stuffing sandwiches the next day.

(Yes cranberries aren’t cylindrical-shaped, but neither is tuna, and yet….)

HANK: Like a pumpkin and pumpkin pie. Of course. Still. I mean--I really love actual authentic cranberry relish, and it's even good on oatmeal. But not the canned stuff with ridges. How about you, Reds and Readers? Where are you in the great cranberry debate?

135 comments:

  1. Well, I make my own cranberry sauce, but if I had to choose a can, I would get the whole berry cranberry sauce [but I'd be tempted to dump it into a pan and fancy it up a bit] . . . .

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    1. cranberries, triple berry blend, crushed pineapple, orange juice, orange peel, a bit of sugar

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    2. PINEAPPLE! Whoa. I have never heard that.

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    3. There are recipes that include a variety of fruits, including oranges and/or apples and/or peaches, but pineapple is the favorite around here . . . .

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  2. Hi all! Coming to you from Heathrow! More to come when I get home later today! Xxx

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    1. I'm all about the homemade. Apples, Oranges, Walnuts all ground with the cranberries amd a little sugar to balance it out

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  3. My sister-in-law makes a great relish we all enjoy. But we used to buy the cans, whole berry usually. I enjoyed that, too. Not sure how I'd feel about going back after being spoiled by my sister-in-law, however.

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  4. Whoever posted the picture of the ridged cylindrical shaped cranberry sauce sliced on a dish with the famous can beside it deserves a photography award. What a beautiful image! I'm not saying I won't eat some homemade cranberry goo, especially since my daughter's mother-in-law usually brings some for Christmas, but all I can say to the beautiful canned with ridges is "to me, you are perfect."

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  5. I grew up with the canned so it is fine with me. And I never knew about putting it on a turkey sandwich until I was 30 and had it in Vermont. I am also fine with whole cranberry relish, but normally it’s just two of us so we don’t put extra effort there. I love tart food so I get most of the can.

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  6. I don't like cranberry sauce, canned or homemade. I prefer my cranberries in baked goods like muffins. I love driving to the Cape to visit my mother in law and seeing the cranberry bogs. Another reason I am thankful for being born and raised in MA.

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  7. At our annual potluck Thanksgiving dinner with American friends here in Switzerland, I'm responsible for the pies and mashed potatoes, not the cranberries, so I wait and see what appears on the table and eat it whether it's canned jelly or homemade relish. (The latter is rarer because whole cranberries have to be bought frozen in a specialty foods store here). I think of them as two different foods, and I like both. The jelly from the can is a comfort food, and the relish can be excellent (although some people make it too sour)--Hank, yours sounds yummy. I guess I don't take a strong stand on this because I didn't have many traditional Thanksgiving dinners as a child, so I'm not partisan! Like you, Rhys, I could eat just about anything for Thanksgiving and be happy.

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    1. Yup, Kim, I'm with you and Rhys. I don't need anything in particular on Thanksgiving to be happy. I traveled a lot as a kid and learned to go with the flow. Good on you for bringing desserts. That's always one of my favorite parts anyways ;-)

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    2. Yes, Thanksgiving is whatever you want it to be!

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  8. Like Debs, I grew up with the canned stuff but haven't eaten it since I was a teenager. I love making my own. Thanks for the tip about Tiple Sec, Hank! I'll also throw a clementine in, since that's what I have. Homemade is easy and pretty, you can make it any day ahead of time, and it's so much more interesting than the can.

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  9. Haha, I grew up with canned cranberry, yes the jiggly jello-kind and I don't mind if it's served, but I don't crave it either. To me so much of Thanksgiving is about nostalgia (for many Americans, anyways) and people tend to stick to the tried and true, even people who are adventurous eaters in their everyday life. If they grew up with the jelly, that's what they want! My parents did eventually switch to the homemade kind (once they realized how easy it is), but I think I may have been out of the house or a teenager by then and not very interested in what was being served, more interested in marathoning whatever was on TV as counter-programming for football.
    We travel to my husband's aunt's house for Thanksgiving and they serve a homemade cranberry sauce that's quite nice, but when my husband and I make it we tend to jazz it up quite a bit more either with orange/citrus flavors *or* jalapenos, not both!
    And I'll say this for the fans of the jelly, you've probably got one less pot/saucpan to wash!

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    1. True about the pan! But yes, easy (and better) to make in advance. Then you just have to make sure you remember to serve it, since it'll certainly be behind something in the fridge. And oh, tradition--my little brother insisted on black cherry jello with whole black cherries. Weird. Mom must have made it in some formative year....:-)

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  10. Like HANK, I have never tasted cranberry sauce from a can! In fact, our family did not have any type of cranberry sauce with our Thanksgiving dinner.

    Since local cranberries are plentiful in autumn, I make my own chunky sauce. Adding Triple Sec is a great idea. But why walnuts on top?

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    1. Not on top, really, walnut bits mixed in. It's delish!

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  11. When it comes to cranberry sauce and cranberry relish and whole berry or jelly, canned or homemade, it's all good. I haven't made my own concoction that I can remember. My step mother made one with walnuts. It was delicious. They are all great on turkey sandwiches over the weekend. But, sorry Debs, warn me if there is honey in yours or I will be sick for a long time I am so allergic to honey.

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    1. Yes, Judy, Grace had asked about walnuts--and I wondered if my recipe was strange. So reassuring to know you like them, too!

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    2. Ok, I believe you both! I just never seen a cranberry sauce here that includes walnuts.

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    3. I thought about you when I wrote that, Judy!

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  12. This is one of those toilet paper over or under kinds of discussions. My husband will ONLY eat the canned cranberry jelly stuff, so that's what I buy. I like Hank's version but only if someone else makes it.

    I used to have a recipe for cranberry bread that uses the real berries and I LOVED that. Now I'm wondering where I put the recipe. Off to thumb through my recipe box.

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    1. My mom made a fabulous Santa Claus cake at Christmas that had chopped real cranberries in it. Yummy and pretty.

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    2. I make a cranberry/orange quick bread during this time of year. YUM!

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    3. Grace! Cranberry-orange quick bread is probably my favorite quick bread of all variations. Yum!!

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    4. OOOH, I am eating pretzels on the plane, so this is making me SO hungry! Annette, let us know what you find!

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    5. I, too, used to have a cranberry orange bread recipe that I can’t find. If you find yours, Annette, please consider sharing. — Pat S

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  13. I grew up with a covered bowl of homemade cranberries always in the fridge during the months fresh ones were available. My father ate them with cream.

    These days I prefer cranberry orange relish. And yesterday I made two bags worth. I also add a large apple to mine. It is divine. What we have left over goes in the freezer in small batches so we always have it available. It’s great with or on any sandwich

    I wonder what Rosalynn would have made. My heart hurts for Jimmy

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    1. Yes, so agree, she was quite the great lady. I really took a moment of silence for her--we could all learn a lot from her. From both of them. And adding apple--that is genius!

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  14. It is hard to beat Mama Stanberg's Cranberry Relish. Tangy and yummy! The recipe can be found on the NPR website, and NPR has been reminding us us of it for years.

    Canned cranberry sauce is alo acceptable. I prefer the whole berry type. A can of plain cranberry sauce and a bottle of ketchup can be heated up to make a fantastic Swedish meatball sauce; your guests will rave about it.

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    1. I can imagine that--and why that works! Fabulous idea. Thank you!

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    2. Jerry, thank you for the memory of Mama Stamberg’s “pepto bismal” pink! Need to listen again this year. Elisabeth

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  15. We grew up eating the canned jelly cranberry sauce. I've tried the homemade relish and was not a fan.

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  16. Homemade, with real cranberries. Add the flesh and juice of a real orange, some honey and voilà -- the perfect accompaniment to the meal.

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    1. Yum. SO agree. But no honey if Judy (see above) comes over! (why do we only make this on Thanksgiving?)

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  17. I'm definitely a devoted fan of the tower of horror! Hell, I'm not even making a meal and what is one of the two things I made sure to buy at the grocery store? Yep, the can of jellied cranberry sauce. You know, for leftovers I might happen to bring home.

    Maybe if I cared about cooking or had to cook the meal I'd have a different opinion but I doubt it. One can opener and a side dish is done. On a day (or days) where you are cooking up a storm, the time saving alone is worth it.

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  18. We grew up with the canned jellied stuff; fresh cranberries weren't available in my memory until maybe the 1990s? If they were, they'd have been more expensive than the cans

    I like all the varieties, frankly, and Steve eats whatever I put on the table. But two of our daughters, who are otherwise pretty sophisticated eaters, insist on the canned slices.

    Hank, you ought to at least taste it, especially if you're going to be so anti-can. It's not the same, but it's very good. Ocean Spray has been making the stuff for eons, so theirs is the only one I'd recommend.

    If I can shake the last bit of this darn flu, which is a horrible, hacking cough, we will travel to Michigan for Thanksgiving, where I will gladly eat whatever my daughter and son-in-law provide. And be thankful.

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    1. Aww....I wondered if you were feeling better! I am so sorry..argh. xooo And as for trying, yes, I know, but maybe if someone disguised the shape....

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    2. Karen, this makes me think of an episode of a food history show I saw (they explore the backgrounds of popular foods) and they talked about every "staple" food in Thanksgiving, including jellied cranberries. You and your neighbors are kind of why it exists. Cranberries were a niche thing, only for Massachusetts and the NE, and growers wanted to bring the berries to a wider audience. The whole berries didn't travel well at the time. Enter canned, jellied cranberries.

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    3. KAREN: Hope you feel better before Thanksgiving!

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    4. Thank you, Hank. Today is a much better day, although I have already fallen asleep once this morning. Everyone, please get your flu shots! This Flu B brought me to my knees. I have literally been in bed for most of the last week and a half.

      Liz, thank you for that factoid. A few years ago my grandson interviewed me for a school project about how different food and eating is now from when I was his age. He was stunned to know that we didn't have access to stuff like fresh tomatoes or broccoli or spinach all year long. And the only kinds of "foreign" foods we ate were things like Chefboyardee or Kraft spaghetti in a can or box, or Chinese food like canned chow mein. He takes his easy access to sushi for granted!

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    5. Karen, I’m so sorry you’ve been felled with the flu. Clare has it although she got the vaccine and is still wiped out after 10 days. Not fun. Sending hugs

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    6. Gosh, Karen. The flu is no fun at all. I was so sick with it last summer and it lasted way too long! Feel better soon. Don't push yourself to be doing stuff. Take a couple days of complete rest. Your body needs it!

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    7. Hope you are up to snuff by Thanksgiving, Karen! I got my flu shot on Saturday, whew.

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    8. Judy, I have hardly been out of bed since I got home from Boston!

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    9. Sorry Karen for leaving this out - hope you feel better! My employer was going to do a flu shot clinic so they could offer this year's COVID shot, they delayed and delayed, I got COVID, finally gave waiting and went to my pharmacy a few weeks ago.

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    10. Karen, I'm sorry you've been so sick. I got my flu shot the end of September. I hope you feel like going to your daughter's.

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  19. I never ate the canned cranberry jelly when I was growing up. Didn’t like it. Never ate it as an adult. Once married and hosting T-Day I started making my own with fresh cranberries, and oranges. Maybe from the Frugal Gourmet. Then one I found one with 1 bag of cranberries, 1 cup of sugar, grated zest and juice of one orange and 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger. (I now use fresh grated ginger) Put all but zest in a pan, bring to bool. Reduce hear, simmer until some of the berries start to pop. Cover, turn off heat, let stand 10 minutes. Stir in zest. Cool to room temperature and refrigerate. And yes to turkey sandwiches with dressing and cranberry relish! Suzette Ciancio

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    1. YES! That's just how I make it, too. But not ginger. and with triple sec for some of the orange juice. SO good, and it's amazing how it chills so beautifully.

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  20. As far as I am concerned a little bit of cranberry sauce - or relish - goes a long way. But it is still nice to have some on the table. My favorite thing to do with the canned stuff is to mix some with mayo (not Miracle Whip, Julia!) and put it on turkey sandwiches the next day.

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    1. THAT is a genius idea! I will definitely try it. Thank you!

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  21. I remember a Thanksgiving hostess who opened a can of jellied cranberry sauce and slid it into a silver serving dish designed to hold exactly one can load. OMG. Whole berry sauce, preferably Trader Joe's after the homemade version runs out.

    I also make a superb cranberry muffin for Thanksgiving breakfasts.

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    1. That's hilarious! And good cranberry muffins are transporting...

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  22. You made me laugh and remember with the cranberry mold bit. As kids, we always had Christmas/Thanksgiving/Easter at my Grandparents. For Christmas, we even packed a suitcase and moved there - for a week! They lived next door – we walked…
    Anyway, one year Gran got all fancy and made cranberry sauce in a jelly mold. She had previously, for some reason, made a tomato aspic, which was an abomination in food. Poor her, it took so long and was so much work.
    Back to the cranberry mold, where it was in the same ring, and a conglomeration of cranberries, orange bits, celery, maybe onion bits and miniature marshmallows all set in gelatin and put in the ring. Little tufts of celery greenery were the decoration – we had never heard of parsley at the time. It was deemed better than the aspic, but still voted never to be made again.
    We went back to canned cranberry sauce – whole berry, and most importantly everyone’s favourite spiced apple jelly (my mother made it. That and the candied sweet potatoes were her contribution to the meal). Today, I only serve cranberry sauce/relish if there will be company, and only make enough for the meal. There are jalapenos in it.

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    1. Aspic. YEESH. That is simply an awful thing. But--onions in the cranberries? Celery? That's...perplexing.... OH! Jalapenos. That could be great.

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    2. Yes, my recipe (from long ago Gourmet) has jalapenos. Delish.

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  23. Like Karen mentioned, I don't think whole cranberries were even available here when I was growing up. We always had the canned kind, but I can't remember who, if anyone, ever ate it. My mom was willing to make new things--she would have enjoyed making cranberry relish from scratch had the ingredients been available. (She had a lot of extra pot-washers on hand, :-)).

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    1. Yes, I agree, that's fascinating. I never thought about the availability. Hmm.

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  24. OH, that sounds so tart and fabulous. Someday will you share the recipe?

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  25. I have, somewhere in a book, a recipe for a cranberry relish with orange zest. That was the first time I really *got* the cranberry part of TG. Unfortunately, The Hubby was the only other person who liked it, and he also has a strong preference for the can. So that's what we buy. Oh well.

    Cranberry bread sounds wonderful.

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  26. My homemade cranberry sauce calls for two cups sugar (which is too much!!) to one pound of cranberries, 1 cup water, and 1/2 an orange, rind and all, chopped. (Or you can leave the orange as one or two chunks, if you prefer.) As I said above and am happy to repeat, that's too much sugar, so I start with way less and add more till it tastes just right -- slightly tart. Also, I use brown sugar because I always do, given the option. The cranberry-orange combo of flavors is fabulous.

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    1. Oh, I so agree...at least twice to much sugar. And you are essentially making simple syrup, right? Brown sugar is a brilliant idea. I'm going to try one batch with brown and one with white and do a cranberry taste test!

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  27. I agree about cranberry bread. SO yummy! I sometimes add cranberries to banana bread or to chick pea muffins.

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  28. I like home-made cranberry relish and also the jiggly sweet mess from a can, so I can go either way. Cranberries are a necessary part of Thanksgiving! We are heading to my little sis's house this year and she loves the canned stuff, so we will probably have that. Back in my gluten-eating and baking days, I made cranberry streusel bars. It was fun to cook the cranberries and watch them pop and soften, and the cookies were beautiful and delicious.

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  29. This is the recipe I use for the filling. https://www.pillsbury.com/recipes/french-cranberry-apple-pie/dd3c422a-a952-4b4d-b2c3-794d98ba3a9d
    I usually roll out my own crust for which I like to use the Betty Crocker pie crust mix which makes two crusts. The other crust is for the pumpkin pie.

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  30. And I use Granny Smith for the apples.

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  31. Homemade, uncooked relish all the way. I use it all year in our daily lunch wraps.

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    1. Libby, I've made it uncooked, too, and it's delicious, but the family treated it with great suspicion.

      The recipe I used called for adding an entire, unpeeled orange, and grinding the whole thing in the food processor.

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    2. That sounds like what my mother made, Karen, although it was in the time before food processors so she used a grinder. I think she continued with the grinder even after she owned a processor but I really don't know for sure.

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    3. Karen, that is it. Cranberries, sugar, 1/2 a lemon, and one orange. Pop in the food processor (or an old style food grinder) and chop it all up into beautiful bright jewel tones.

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  32. LOL - this reminds me of the very heated Miracle Whip vs. Hellman's debate. Pistols at dawn, Julia!!!

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    1. Cracking me up once again, Jenn! — Pat S

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    2. You get me, Pat!

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  33. In the early years of our marriage, I used to make various real-cranberry sauces or relishes. I liked them well enough, but never got overly attached to any one of them. But often our Thanksgiving was with extended family -- especially after our son was born. And thus he was introduced to the canned variety. It is his absolute favorite part of the Thanksgiving dinner. He just turned 30, and it is clear that this preference is not going to change. So when I'm planning the meal, I just buy a can and leave it at that. And on those years when we are all joining extended family, I always bring along a can just in case -- because I know it would be a disappointing Thanksgiving for him if there was none on the table. So for me cranberry sauce isn't a food thing -- it's a mom thing.

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    1. That’s very sweet, Susan. We are always moms, no matter how old our “kids” are! — Pat S

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  34. Another vote for the jiggly canned cranberry sauce! It was a tradition with my mother's Thanksgiving fare, and my husband also insisted on it. It's easy and tastes great with turkey, so why not?

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  35. Serve both canned and fresh made -- problem solved!

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  36. HANK: Perfect topic for Thanksgiving week! This reminded me of a debate I had with some of my classmates who liked to tell tall tales. Sometimes I thought they were joking or maybe telling a falsehood.

    They claimed that Cranberry sauce was Jelly. I said "You made it up". Our teacher settled our debate by showing us the plate. She moved the plate and to my surprise, the cranberry sauce moved like jelly! I cannot recall if the cranberry sauce came out of a can?

    Though I recall seeing Canned Cranberry Sauce, I cannot recall if we bought cans in preparation for Thanksgiving. I wonder how much sugar is in the canned version in contrast to homemade cranberry relish.

    Every year we go over to a relative's house for Thanksgiving. Their house is beautiful - it looks like Snow White's cottage from the outside, though the inside is gorgeous. I think it was built in the 1920s and that is considered Old for the USA, especially in California. I think the cranberry relish at the long table (usually 20 people ) is homemade. Delicious!

    Always loved Cranberry Sauce at Thanksgiving. It does not really matter if it is from a can or if it is homemade as long as it is delicious and healthy, right?

    Diana

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    1. It is jelly. Cranberries are full of pectin, which is the stuff that makes fruit juice into jelly. The stuff from the can is literally just cranberries, sugar (in the form of corn syrup) and water. The jelly-ness of it is entirely natural.

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    2. The canned version contains high fructose corn syrup, which is not healthy!

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    3. Is it jelly? That's SO hilarious! Is the movement that makes a thing jelly?

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  37. I like my cranberries baked into lemon muffins. The only time I have eaten them as a jam like substance is at a local restaurant that makes a sandwich called the Gobbler. I could never eat it from a tin can it looks disgusting.

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    1. HA! So agree. But the cranberry lemon muffins are amazing!

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  38. Well, I’m okay with either canned or homemade. I personally don’t make it, which gives me time to make other Thanksgiving contributions.

    DebRo

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  39. Sadly, canned. The real cranberries, in every one I've tentatively tried so far, have a bitter bite to them I don't like. Plus, you squish into the wrong cranberry and it's like an overstuffed gusher of wrong.
    Canned is a consistent mouth feel and slight sweet-berry taste that just is a smoother mix with the other foods to me.

    To be fair though, I've only been able to stand cranberries in any form for a few years and still can't convince my tongue the juice is okay.

    Bring on the stuffing vs dressing topic ;)

    Tori

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    1. Stuffing is THURSDAY! xoxooo ANd the cranberries just need sugar and triple sec. xxx

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  40. I'm in the canned, jelly type cranberry sauce camp. It's what I grew up with and I feel like it's a tradition. I've tried the homemade kind and it just wasn't the same. I also tried a cranberry relish with jalapenos and oranges in it. Nope!

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    1. Oh, it's definitely not the same! (For better or for worse...)

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  41. One interesting thing about cranberries is that they have so much pectin that the gelling is entirely natural. Boil water, sugar and berries for about 15 mins, strain and pour into a bowl or any jello mold and it will set up to the same texture as if it was in a can.

    There will be 24 of us together this Thursday and we'll have both kinds of cranberry sauce on our table. I wish all of you a happy and joyful Thanksgiving with your loved ones.

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  42. I like all things cranberry. For our work, someone made the best cranberry white chocolate cookies. I make a cranberry raspberry jello salad that is my favorite.

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  43. I make homemade cranberry sauce for me. My husband likes the canned. Funny story: our first Thanksgiving I made homemade cranberry sauce. My then boyfriend (now husband of 23 years) had never eaten the homemade stuff. He tried it and said it was good but he didn't like the crunchy things in there. I said those were the cranberries. Ever since, he gets the canned cranberry sauce.

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    1. The crunchy things are the cranberries! That is a PRICELESS story!

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  44. At my house, it’s homemade cranberry orange relish. Recipe from my aunt when I was about 5

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  45. I hate to admit I've never tried homemade cranberry sauce. I always buy Ocean Spray's Whole Berry Cranberry sauce. aprilbluetx at yahoo dot com

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    1. And everyone says that's different than the jelly kind...

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  46. It is 7am Pacific time and there are already 82 comments. Too many comments to read before work, so I'll comment now and come back and read through out the day.

    I'll eat the jiggly, ridged stuff if that is the only offering or if the alternate offering had walnuts, because allergies are no fun during huge family meals. I've been making the classic cranberry orange relish for years. And for years, no members of Mom's family would touch the jeweled, glistening and juicy bowl of yum, so more for me. But when my youngest aunt married Chris, and his taste buds headed toward the relish, others followed. There is two or three who refuse to budge from the jiggly, ridged stuff but my exclusive leftovers suddenly started disappearing before I could put a lid on the bowl. Since I was the cranberry relish maker, and supplier of the alternate, I started making double, since had a large family and others wanted leftovers,and leaving some at home for my enjoyment during the quiet, non family loaded days following Thanksgiving.

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    1. I make double, too, Deana, to share with my daughter and have plenty of leftovers for both of us.

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    2. Yes, I make double too! It is also really good on oatmeal!

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  47. Count me on Team Homemade. However you prefer it, enjoy your cranberry, my friends, and Happy Thanksgiving to all!

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  48. Here's the deal. I make cranberry sauce from fresh berries, and we love it. That said, we also love cranberry sauce with ridges and I always have both on hand. I confess to eating jellied cranberry sauce straight from the can as a child. Better than Jell-o! And as for the sandwich debate - both work well! Or so I've heard :) I mean, my friends tell me - well, heck - cranberry sauce, dressing, and turkey on bread. YUM

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  49. Walnuts??
    Like both canned varieties. Also make it with strawberries. They compliment each other, the sweetness and the tartness of each go well together and retains the flavor of each.

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    1. Strawberries! Brilliant. Does the sauce still set up properly with strawberries?

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  50. Because I equate cranberries with celebration, I love them every which way!

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  51. Cranberry relish for me! I make it a few days ahead, so the flavors really meld. EASY PEASY... throw a bag of fresh or frozen cranberries in you food processor, along with a cut-up whole orange, rind and all, either an apple and a pear or two apples, cut up and cored, 1/3-1/2 cup honey (to taste) and a drop or two of orange essential oil (or extract). Pulse until it's relish texture, refrigerate and enjoy. So far, even non-cranberry lovers eat it up!

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    1. Oh, that is incredibly interesting--I am trying to picture it. WOw. I am going to try that....

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  52. I remember being a child, fascinated by the rings in jellied, canned cranberry sauce, but there is nothing as delicious as home-made whole berry. And it's quite easy. I had a whole collection of recipes but no one really liked the exotic ones except me (Yes, cranberry sauce with a hit of horseradish is actually very good!) Mostly now I do a version of raw berries, orange rind and zest and sugar. Oh, and I have a lovely recipe for cran-orange quick bread.A friend gave it to me in COLLEGE. Happy to share. Away now (trip to celebrate big anniversary) but home tomorrow.(Tues) Happy holiday to all.

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  53. As I child I thought canned cranberry sauce was disgusting. Still do. If I'm going to have it make it a delicious raw relish.

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  54. Canned for me! I don’t like real cranberries or cranberry relish. I need something I can spread on the sandwich the next day. We have a restaurant in Charleston, SC that serves a Thanksgiving leftover sandwich all year long and it has the canned stuff as well.

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  55. Yes, I remember canned cranberry as a kid (I was the kid, not the cranberry), and I ate it with relish. There, I've said quite enough.

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  56. I like both kinds, in moderation, and even one made with ground up berries and oranges, not cooked, but I've never had it with triple sec and orange rind. That sounds so good. I don't think it's fair to say you don't like it if you've never tried it . . . hmm, that was my mother's lesson, so I tried the lima beans and was excused from them (more for her, as they were her favorite). Happy day of giving thanks. <3 -- Storyteller Mary

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  57. Grew up eating the canned cranberry sauce. Tits one less thing “to cook”. Plus it’s memory of family thanksgiving dinner especially now that most of my immediate family are gone. I fondly remember us kids trying to bump the table to make it jiggle but not enough to make mom notice. Then the one time at the kids’ table (wobbly card table), my sister (8 yrs younger) trying to & causing her drink glass to actually tip over with milk running across the table & onto the floor.

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  58. It's mandarin orange season in the California Sierra foothills and for turkey dinner, I like to make mandarin cranberry sauce. I experiment with the recipe every year, but it always starts with fresh mandarin orange juice and cranberries. But, for turkey sandwiches the day after, I admit to opening that can of molded cranberry and putting slices on my turkey, stuffing and avocado sandwiches.

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  59. Yes, only fresh home made cranberry sauce for me, my husband, and family, too!

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