Saturday, October 6, 2007

Cranberry Relish

Profgrrrrl's sick-bed comment about waiting for cranberry season so she can make cranberry sauce prompted several comments, including one about cranberry relish. That would be the real thing, made with orange rind, not the oversweetened commercial stuff that comes in a can. Tart and yummy (as garnish or spread on toast or waffles) and with enough Vitamin C to cure what ails Profgrrrrl.

The recipe from dear departed Mother of Mrs. Pion follows below the fold.

Cranberry Relish

  • 3 pounds fresh cranberries
  • 6 to 8 large apples
  • 6 oranges
  • 1/3 C sugar for each cup cranberries
Core apples to remove all seeds, chop apples and oranges into pieces, grind all ingredients (including apple and orange peel) into relish with food grinder. Add sugar and mix well. Refrigerate.


This relish is uncooked, so wash everything you use. These days, I'd recommend a second rinse.

This is the original recipe. The reference to "large apples" is maybe 50 years out of date. Back then a large apple would be more like today's normal ones. In addition, she used the thin skinned juice oranges rather than thick skinned navel oranges and removed the seeds while chopping them into a size that will fit in the grinder. If you use oranges with a thick skin, you might want to discard some of the white part of the peel, which can be bitter. You definitely want the yellow peel!

Best used after it has been refrigerated for a few days to blend the flavors.

We use an old hand-cranked food grinder, alternating between berries, orange, and apple as we go. Don't overdo it if using a food processor. It should be fairly coarsely ground, just enough to shred all the skins.

This makes a lot of relish, enough for the entire holiday for a large family! A more plausible size for most of you would use one orange and one apple to a half-pound of berries, which is probably about 2 C (plus or minus). You can vary it to taste, of course, and no two batches (or recipes) are the same. For example, the "Joy of Cooking" uses 1 orange, 4 C berries, and 2 C sugar (a lot more sugar than our recipe, which is tart rather than sweet), while the Mennonite "More-with-less Cookbook" uses 1 orange (seeded), 1 apple (cored), 2 C berries, and 1/2 to 3/4 C sugar or honey, plus (optionally) 1/4 C nuts.

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