All-Natural Homemade Apple-Cranberry Sauce Recipe
All-Natural Cranberry Sauce Recipe
The humble cranberry is so good- tasting and so good-looking and so good-for-you that I wrote a poem about it: The Ode to the Cranberry. The all-natural Apple-Cranberry Sauce with Raisins and Maple Syrup with no added sugar is so good that even people who hate cranberry sauce love it. It's been wowing my Thanksgiving guests for years. I will also share a few tips for using leftover cranberry sauce.
Apple-Cranberry Sauce with Raisins and Maple Syrup
Before we get to the recipe, let's start with a few facts about cranberries.
A Cranberry Bog
What are Super-Foods?
Antioxidants inhibit the formation of free-radicals in the body. These free-radicals can cause cell-death and inflammation in the body. This inflammation can inhibit the immune system leading to disease.
The so-called “super-foods” inhibit the oxidation that leads to free radicals. Cranberries are high in anti-oxidants, as are apples, berries, beans and some other foods.
What Are Cranberries?
Cranberries are a healthy anti-oxidant rich super-food.
Cranberries are grown in sandy bogs and marshes in the cooler regions of the northern hemisphere They grow on low creeping evergreen shrubs or vines up to about seven feet long and about two to eight inches in height.
The flowers are dark pink and are fertilized by bees.The fruit is a berry that is initially white, but turns a deep red with fully ripe. It has an very acidic taste and thus requires sweetening when used in recipes.
The cranberry ripens in the fall, and is very popular as a side dish for Thanksgiving turkey as cranberry sauce. Many people say they hate cranberry sauce. What they mean is they hate the over-sweetened glop that comes in cans. Try the recipe below. I guarantee they will love it.
Fresh cranberries are also excellent in breads or pies. I make a wonderful cranberry orange breakfast bread every winter. I also make a quick cranberry pie using canned cherries and raw cranberries. If your store offers a buy-one-get-one-free special on cranberries, make sure to get your free bag of cranberries. They keep very well in the freezer until you are ready to use them for another recipe.
The cranberry is also processed into juice. If you buy cranberry juice in the store, be sure to read the label. You want cranberry juice that has been sweetened with apple juice or grape juice and not cane sugar or high fructose-corn syrup.
Apples and a Bag of Cranberries
Ingredients for Apple Cranberry Sauce
- 2 cups tart apples, (Cored, peeled and chopped)
- 3 cups fresh cranberries, (1 12-ounce bag)
- 3/4 cup raisins
- 3/4 cup maple syrup
- pinch salt
- 6 whole cloves
- 1 cinnamon stick, About 2 to 3 inches long
- 1 TBS arrowroot, (or cornstarch)
- 1/2 cup Water
- Juice of 1 lemon
Apple-Cranberry Sauce Ingredients in a Pot
Instructions for Apple Cranberry Sauce
- Put the cranberries into a colander and rinse them. Pick over the cranberries to remove any stems or berries that are bruised
- Add the apples, cranberries, raisins, maple syrup, salt, cloves, and cinnamon stick to 2-quart pot.
- Let it come to a boil, and then reduce the heat so it boils slowly. Cover the pot and let it cook for 20 to 25 minutes or until the cranberries have burst open. Stir occasionally while cooking.
- Stir the arrowroot into the half cup of water until it is dissolved. Add it to the cranberry mixture in the pot and stir constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens. The mixture will be cloudy at first, and then it will turn bright red within about a minute.
- When it turns bright red, it is done. Remove from stove and let it cool for 5 to 10 minutes.Stir in the lemon juice.
- Pour the sauce into a serving bowl and let it chill in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight .Before serving remove the cinnamon stick and the cloves. (The cloves may be hard to find. You should count out exactly six cloves when you prepare the recipe so you know how many you are looking for.)
- The recipe makes about 6 cups of sauce.
Cooking Apple-Cranberry SauceClick thumbnail to view full-size
How would you rate this recipe for Apple Cranberry Sauce?
Uses for Leftover Apple-Cranberry Sauce
I hope you are lucky enough to have leftovers.
Add some of this sauce to turkey sandwiches.
Serve it with pork loin or pork chops. Great with chicken too.
Mix it into cooked oatmeal.
It is also great spooned over ice cream, pound cake, or bread pudding.
Use as a topping for cheesecake.
Lightly toast a slice of rustic artisan whole-wheat bread. Spread goat cheese or brie on the bread. Top with this sauce.
Mix it into plain yogurt. Or make a yogurt parfait layering yogurt cranberry sauce and granola.
A Cranberry Cookbook
This is a wonderful book dedicated to cranberries. If you love cranberries as much as I do, you will love this book as much as I do. The book includes a wonderful selection of cranberry recipes suitable for each season, beautiful photography, and even some cranberry lore, useful information, and fun facts.
An Ode to a Cranberry
An Ode to a Cranberry
I like my cranberry sauce so much, I wrote a poem about it.
An Ode to a Cranberry
The humble cranberry,
born in a marshy bog,
floating in a community
of bright red cranberries.
One crisp autumn day,
swept into a net,
then hauled away
and bagged in plastic wrap.
Trucked to a store,
piled high in bins,
like bright red beanbags.
Buy one, get one free.
Cooked with apples and raisins,
maple syrup, and a cinnamon stick--
It boils, and bursts, and bubbles,
becoming beauteously thick.
A shimmering bright red jelly,
set in a cut-glass bowl,
served chilled, yet
warming my Thanksgiving soul.
Just for fun:
What kind of cranberry sauce do you prefer?
© 2014 Catherine Giordano