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Cranberry Sauce with Bourbon and Orange

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bourbon cranberry sauce in a jarWe’re friends right? And friends would never lead each other astray, would they? In fact friends should look out for one another’s best interests. So in that vein, as your friend and food blogger, I want to steer you away from canned cranberry sauce.

Like, forever. Permanently. No turning back.

bourbon cranberry sauce

The best part about fresh cranberry sauce is that it doesn’t include the worst part of canned cranberry sauce. By that I mean the lingering flavor of the can itself. The second worst part about canned cranberry sauce is that it doesn’t include the second best part about fresh cranberry sauce. And by that I mean booze. We use bourbon here but you could certainly substitute for a woodsy gin or a smoky rye. Even a glug of red wine will do. If booze and berries aren’t your thing, stick to orange, apple or pomegranate juice for all of the liquid. You could, of course, use cranberry juice but where is the fun in that?

bourbon cranberry sauce spoon

It couldn’t be easier to deck out your holiday bird (or roast or ham or ice cream sundae) with this jubilantly crimson compote. If you can dump ingredients into a pot and stir, you too can have a more delicious Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. Take it from me, consummate cranberry sauce maker, rare cranberry sauce eater (Did I just admit that? Remember: we’re friends!) That’s right – I may not slather this on my turkey but I do know it’s a big (and easy) upgrade from anything you get at the store. Plus, everyone thinks it must be so incredibly hard to make and they are dead wrong, so you look like the hero and they get the best cranberry sauce they have ever had. Win!

bourbon cranberry sauce with orange

Cranberry Sauce with Bourbon and Orange

The perfect accompaniment to our Rolled Turkey Breast with Sausage and Mushrooms

2 cups fresh cranberries

¾ cup brown sugar

zest of half an orange

juice of an orange

1 oz your favorite bourbon

½ cup cold water

Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Cook until the berries have burst and combined into a soft jam. Reduce until thickened and deepened in color. Serve warm, at room temperature or chilled.

Leftovers? Swirl some into our quick and easy Cranberry Cake

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