Who doesn’t love jiggly, cranberry sauce out of a can? No seriously, who doesn’t love it? I think it taste pretty darn good and is the highlight of the less than flavorful institutional turkey dinners I have had over the years in the Navy. But….none the less, it is not on my menu for ‘A Flexitarian Thanksgiving’. My mother’s cranberry relish is amazingly fresh, simple and could never compare to the can.
This second installment of ‘A Flexitarian Thanksgiving’ I am sharing what is on my Thanksgiving menu. Everything is vegan except for the turkey!
I can’t quite remember when my Mom started making cranberry relish. I want to say that it is a fairly new addition to our Thanksgiving table and a creation she starting making maybe 15 years ago.
When I first lived in Hawaii in 2004, I remember hosting Thanksgiving for my division of Sailors. I asked what their favorite dishes were and I cooked a feast with everything from cornflake crusted potato casserole to this cranberry relish. For a group of Sailors that was mainly from the south and the mid-west, cranberry relish was not something they were familiar with and I did actually end up serving a can of cranberry sauce for them.
The key ingredient I picked up from my Hawaiian influence was pineapple! It adds sweetness and a tropical flare that is unmistakable. This year I added one more ingredient that is prevalent in the islands, fresh ginger.
This relish is potent and a tiny, tiny bit goes a long way. You don’t need more than a teaspoon for your Thanksgiving plate. I only make about a cup and usually still have left overs. It is wonderful on sandwiches, adds zing to vinaigrette, and would be great in a smoothie.
Did you see the first installment of ‘A Flexitarian Thanksgiving’?
Hasselback Potatoes kick off the menu.
Coming up next Sourdough, Vegan Sausage, Apple & Sage Stuffing!
- 1 cup of fresh cranberries
- 1 inch of peeled fresh ginger root
- 1 tablespoon orange zest (zest from about 1 orange)
- ¼ cup chopped fresh pineapple or 1 ring of canned pineapple
- 2 tablespoons bourbon (optional)
- 2 tablespoons white sugar (use 1½ tablespoons sugar if using canned pineapple)
- Place all ingredients in a food processor or high speed blender. Pulse until cranberries have broken down into small pieces. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Turn processor or blender on and process until smooth and well incorporated. Taste and adjust sugar to liking. Chill at least overnight.
This relish is potent and a tiny, tiny bit goes a long way. You don't need more than a teaspoon for your Thanksgiving plate.