Fresh Cranberry Relish

Fresh Cranberry Relish

The holidays are nothing without tradition. Likely, your Thanksgiving table has looked basically the same each November for as long as you can remember. Holiday meals are a time to reflect on our forbearers and the sacrifices they made so that we can enjoy a prosperous, blessed life. These gatherings also give us occasion to peer into the future, bright with hope and opportunity.

At my house, some traditions are non-negotiable. We will make my grandmother’s rolls every year. Their distinct taste, fluffy texture and and intoxicating smell bring her to us at a time when we miss her most. My mom’s pumpkin pie has still yet to be beat (in my opinion) and will continue to hold it’s place as the main feature in our dessert selection.

We also tend to try one or two new dishes or variations each year. Sometimes, I change up the green beans, while other years, I offer the last of the garden beets, scarlet and shimmering with butter. Holiday recipe experimenting is not without it’s dangers. We now have to offer two types of green beans because our family is decidedly and evenly split over the fresh saute and the traditional casserole. Thankfully, both make delicious leftovers.

Most families serve some type of cranberry sauce with their turkey. These bitter berries have a true American heritage, having been used by native peoples as both food and medicine. Some groups even mixed cranberries with deer meat, a possible precursor to our modern Thanksgiving tradition.

At my house, we serve this delightful cranberry relish. It is fresh, flavorful and can easily be made several days in advance. Leftovers are delicious spread on a turkey sandwich or baked into muffins or a loaf of quick bread. So, if you’re looking for a new spin to accompany the traditions on your holiday table, mix up a batch of this relish this year.

Cranberry Relish

1 bag fresh cranberries, rinsed
1 small Granny Smith apple, cored
1 small, thin-skinned orange, cut into 4 sections, with seeds removed
½-1 cup sugar

Pulse all fruit in a food processor to chop. Add ½ cup sugar and mix until combined. Taste and add more sugar, if desired.

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