My mother-in-law is an incredibly lovely woman. This year she welcomed my family to her beautiful home for Thanksgiving. Since Ryan and I weren't arriving until the night before, she asked for a shopping list so that she could get the ingredients we needed for our Thanksgiving cooking. I dashed off an e-mail. She went to the store. The end result was that we had both whole cloves and fresh ginger in the house, but not the ground cloves or ground ginger that we needed for the pumpkin pie. I felt terrible because I hadn't said to get ground cloves and ground ginger, I just wrote cloves and ginger. My mother-in-law felt terrible because she hadn't known that I meant ground ginger and ground cloves. Then on Thanksgiving morning as we were wallowing in our respective guilt, she mentioned that she'd picked up a couple of bags of cranberries that she thought might be turned into sauce. A teensy tinesy little light went on in my head as I remember a friend of mine passing along a recipe for gingered cranberry sauce. I ran to the computer and in a true stroke of kismet learned that the recipe called not only for fresh ginger, but also whole cloves. I felt better. My mother-in-law felt better. And thankfully, the cranberry sauce was good. Delicious even. I may have been eating it straight out of the pot. And later out of the tupperware. But we won't discuss that. This is about heart-warming family moments at the holidays not dirty little secrets.
GINGERED CRANBERRY SAUCE
adapted from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone
Below is a doubled version of the recipe because we made a lot of sauce. But when do you make sauce except at Thanksgiving? And don't you usually have a lot of people there?
2 12 oz bags of cranberries
1 1/4 C sugar
1 1/2 C water
2" plump knob of ginger minced
8 whole cloves
juice of a clementine (the original recipe calls for zest of 2 oranges, but we only had clementines and they don't zest well, at least not with a box grater)
DIRECTIONS: Put your cranberries in a colander and rinse them. Go over them carefully and pull out any mookie ones (squished, white). Also pull off any remaining stems. Put in a saucepan with the sugar, water, ginger, cloves and clementine. Heat to a boil then lower to a simmer. Cook until the berries pop. I found this to be incredibly forgiving, I just let it cook while I was doing other things and stopped it when it looked saucey enough. If you don't want any chunks you could puree or strain this, but I liked it the way it was. Refrigerate before serving if you like it cold.