Cranberry Fruit Salad

 

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Cranberries.  

Love ’em or not, the very sight of them says, “The holidays are coming!

Even if you don’t plan to eat them, they can make you happy.  Don’t you just know good things are going to be served when you see that familiar fruit all dressed up and sitting on the table?    No holiday festivity is complete without cranberry sauce, juice or some other cranberry concoction!

Yes they are chock full of vitamins, minerals and anti-bacterial properties, especially known for helping the urinary tract.  Recent dental research shows anti-decay properties, probably attributed by the antioxidants cranberries contain.  But nutrition aside, this little cheerful powerful super food is deeply entrenched in our holiday traditions.

This  Cranberry Fruit Salad is sweet and tart all at the same time.  We love it.  It can be made ahead and served cold or make it at the last minute and serve it warm.   Maybe the best of all is how quickly it comes together.  This recipe flavors one 8-ounce package of cranberries so if you have a large gathering or your family just happens to love cranberry salads, double or triple as needed.

The juice, the zest and the orange pieces come from the same orange unless they are small.  This is sort of a challenge to get the juice out without wrecking the fruit.  Then I zest the peel after it is off the orange.  You could zest the orange and then peel but where’s the fun in that!

Gather cranberries, local raw honey, apple, orange, butter and toasted nuts*. Today I’m using toasted walnuts but pecans or almonds would work equally well.  Season with your favorite spices.  We like cinnamon and ginger with just a pinch of sea salt.  I try to use as many organic products as possible.

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Clean the cranberries and remove any overly bruised or ripe cranberries.  Rinse and place in a saucepan.  Simmer on medium to low heat until tender being careful not to scorch.  Stir almost constantly.  The cranberries will make their own thick sauce.    When cranberries have cooked down to desired consistency.   Remove from heat, add butter, orange juice and honey.   Adjust honey to your family’s taste.  I seldom use all the honey called for but we like our cranberries more tart then sweet; you can add even more honey if you like. Add spices and salt, stirring them in completely.  Fold in the chopped apple and orange. Top with nuts and orange zest.

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 Enjoy!

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Cranberry Fruit Salad

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 15 min

Total Time: 25 min

This Cranberry Fruit Salad is sweet and tart all at the same time. We love it. It can be made ahead and served cold or make it at the last minute and serve it warm. Maybe the best of all is how quickly it comes together.

Ingredients:

  •  8 ounce pkg. cranberries, cleaned and sorted
  • 1/4 cup honey or more if desired
  • 1 TBLS butter
  • 1 gala apple, chopped coarsely
  • 1 orange, chopped, zested and juiced
  • 1/2 cup toasted nuts*
  • 2 TBLS fresh orange juice
  • 1 tsp cinnamon  (I use) 
  • 1/2 tsp ginger  (I use) 
  • pinch of sea salt  (I use)

Directions:

  • Cook cranberries gently until their juice thickens  slightly.
  • When tender and desired consistency, remove from heat.
  • Stir in butter, honey and orange juice
  • Add ginger, cinnamon and salt (or spices of your choice)
  • Fold in apple and orange
  • Top with toasted nuts and orange zest.
  • Chill and serve

* Of course to be able to access all that nutrition; nuts need to be properly prepared.   To prepare nuts properly soak in water and salt 12-18 hours, change water and salt midway through the process.  Cashews should only be soaked 6 hours maximum.  Pine nuts and pistachios 2 hours.  Dehydrate at 200* for 4 hours, stirring every 30 minutes.  I place them on a lightly buttered stoneware baking sheet and usually sprinkle a little salt on them before they cool.   Other sources say bake at 150* or lower for 12-24 hours.    Note: Walnuts have a shorter shelf life;

      

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