My mom has been making Cranberry Waldorf Salad on Thanksgiving day for as long as I can remember. We think the recipe was a hand-me-down...Read More
Kickin’ Cranberry Sauce
It’s well known amongst my family and friends that at the Thanksgiving table, I am the champion of constructing the Perfect Bite. You know what I mean, right?!
That’s when you spear a piece of bird, add a hunk of (paleo) bread stuffing, dunk it in the little gravy puddle on your plate, and top it off with a dollop of tart cranberry sauce.
The recipe below is the cranberry sauce that I will be making this year and forever more. The challenge with creating a paleo-friendly cranberry sauce is that those jewel-like berries hang onto their tartness like my grip on the perfect party dress at Betsey Johnson on Black Friday. This recipe, rather than fighting the bite of cranberries, lulls them into submission with dried dates and orange, then jumps into the fray with aromatic spices and a kick of jalapeño. This sauce isn’t hot, but it’s got personality.
You can make this several days in advance – the flavors mix, mingle, and mellow, ready for your perfect bite. (I think it actually tastes better as it sits, so make it at least one day in advance.)
Kickin’ Cranberry Sauce
Makes about 2 cups | Prep 20 minutes | Cook 15 minutes
4 dried dates
1 large orange
12 ounces fresh cranberries
1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 whole cloves
2 sticks cinnamon
1 small jalapeño, stemmed and thinly sliced
Preheat oven to 450F. Cover a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil; set aside.
Remove the pits from the dates and place in small bowl. Cover with boiling water and allow them to soak until soft, about 10 minutes. Drain off the water and place the dates in a food processor; purée until smooth.
Using a peeler, remove the peel from the orange, taking off as little of the white pith as possible. Cut the peel into very thin strips about 1 1/2 inches long. Squeeze the juice from the orange and set aside.
In a bowl, combine the peel, date purée, cranberries, coconut oil, salt, cloves, cinnamon sticks, and jalapeño. Toss well and transfer to the baking sheet. Roast until the cranberries begin to burst and release their juices, about 10-15 minutes.
Transfer the cranberries to a bowl and stir in 2-3 tablespoons of the reserved orange juice. Let the flavors meld for at least an hour, then taste and add more salt, if necessary. You can store in the refrigerator for a week or so. Remove and toss out the cinnamon sticks before serving.