Hear me out on cranberry sauce. This oft-maligned condiment is actually the stealth star of Thanksgiving.
You may casually spoon a jewel-toned dollop between sweet potatoes and stuffing just for color, but, sure enough, it sneaks onto every forkful, where it can make or break each bite. It's not worth messing with a meal you wait all year for, so this time, why not give it a little extra love?
As for the recipe. You may be thinking: two posts in a row with fresh ginger? She is crazy! Well, that may be true, but I love the spicy undertones ginger adds to sweet recipes. It anchors the sugar and offsets the tart cranberries, directing this under-appreciated dish away from cloying sweetness.
Plus, if you bought ginger to make spiced apple cider, then you probably have extra to use in this recipe.
Sure, you can dress up cranberry sauce with fresh lemon juice or just cook the berries with some sugar, but this slightly spicy rendition is sure to perk up the entire sideboard at your Thanksgiving meal.
Special thanks to Charlyne Mattox for introducing me to ginger-spiked relish. I don't think I'll ever turn back.
Ginger-Orange Cranberry Sauce Recipe by Lindsay Hunt
Ingredients: 3 ½ cups (12 ounces) fresh or frozen cranberries ¾ cup sugar ½ cup freshly squeezed orange juice, plus two 2-inch strips of zest 1 tablespoon finely grated fresh ginger ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
Equipment: A fine grater, such as a Microplane
Directions: 1. Combine the cranberries, sugar, orange juice, ginger, and salt in a medium pot. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring often, until about half of the cranberries have popped, 2 to 3 minutes.
2. Cool the sauce and transfer to a serving dish. Cranberry sauce can be made up to 3 days ahead. Let come to room temperature before serving.