A couple years back, I was driving to Wausau, Wisconsin. Usually, there is not very much traffic on the road to Wausau, so I found it very odd when every car on the road came to a screeching halt. As I slowly inched my way into town, I finally saw what the “gawkers” were looking at. A trailer truck split open down the center, sacrificing its contents onto the road. An enormous red seas of tiny red cranberries had made their escape. That was a sight to behold. Along with snow, ice and fog, Wisconsin can now add cranberries to the list of hazardous driving conditions.
So cranberries, that under appreciated fruit…
Okay, it’s the day after Thanksgiving and you brined and roasted the turkey. You candied the sweet potatoes. You grilled the brussel sprouts, mashed the potatoes and topped them with gravy. And then, chased it all down with pumpkin pie. It’s official. You have a Thanksgiving Cooking Hangover. You don’t want to cook ever, ever again. Solution: Leftovers!
I for one, LOVE left over Thanksgiving fare. All the hoopla leading up to Thanksgiving will yield several days of easy dinner meal planning. It’s like a power-Sunday cook-up, but on a Thursday. So, I am sure you all have ideas of what to do with left over turkey. Turkey hash, turkey tetrazzini, turkey enchiladas. Left over sprouts? Stick them in an omelette. Left over sweet potatoes? Mash them in between a couple of corn tortillas with cheese and black beans and you have a fall-like quesadilla. The list goes on and on. But what do you do with left over cranberry sauce?
We all know that cranberry sauce is a very important but sometimes under appreciated part of Thanksgiving. It’s the colorful pop on a plate full of brown, orange and green. It’s the cool sweet treat to lighten up your mouth after a heavy, gravy-laden roast dinner.
So what do I suggest you do with these little glimmering jewels of leftover sweetness? Here are a few easy things you can do with cranberry sauce especially when you don’t want to cook anything serious until next year!
- Turn your turkey sandwich into a “leftover sandwich” with sprouts and mashed potatoes and a smear of cranberry sauce.
- Do you like brie and preserves? Top your brie with cranberry sauce instead. Or better yet a grilled brie and cranberry sandwich.
- Cranberries are not just for dinner anymore. Have you ever thought of making a yogurt and cranberry sauce parfait topped with a pistachio coconut crumble?
Here’s the recipe I love:
Orange-Scented Cranberry Sauce, adapted from Martha Stewart
1 bag (12 ounces) fresh cranberries
3/4 cups sugar
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1/4 cup of water
2 strips orange zest
In a medium saucepan, combine cranberries, sugar, water, orange juice and zest. Bring to a boil over medium-high. Reduce to a simmer and cook until thickened, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from heat and cool. Refrigerate until needed.
To make a parfait, just layer yogurt, crumble and cranberry sauce in a small glass or Ball jar.
So don’t knock cranberries. They travel far to get into your belly.