Today is Christmas Eve. As you can imagine, lots of people around the world are in their kitchens, putting together dishes for the big day. Laura and I certainly are. We’re trying to get as much finished today as possible so we can sit back and relax tomorrow.
Of course, I can’t let a good recipe go to waste. It’s like I’ve become obsessed over the whole thing. Every time I hear clanking and banging in the kitchen, I get up and run in there to see what’s she’s doing. “Is there a possibility for pictures?” I ask. Lots of times there are. Sometimes there aren’t. In this case (and the last one), I thought sharing how to prepare a really fast “accessory” to a dish would be worthwhile.
Cranberries are one of those fruits that look really great after cooking. I made a nice apple pie a few weeks ago that I was supposed to use cranberries in. Instead, I used wild blackberries that we picked up in the woods. Let’s just say that I should have used the cranberries. Apparently, blackberries turn into an awful dark purple and brown color that bleeds through all the apple mixture. I think if I had used the cranberries, they would have actually brightened the interior of the pie. I sure won’t be making that mistake again.
Tomorrow morning, we’re having pancakes. On top of those pancakes, we’ll be putting a nice sweet cranberry topping. This topping is rich and sweet with tons of cranberry flavor. Since it’s going to be Christmas, I think the cranberries are appropriate.
This is a super simple recipe to prepare and what’s even better, you can make this topping early and store it in the refrigerator. The ingredient list is short and the cooking method is easy. The only excuse someone might have for not making it is that they couldn’t find cranberries for sale in the grocery store after Thanksgiving.
Makes: About 3 Cups of Cranberry Topping
2 Tablespoons Butter
1 Cup Real Maple Syrup
2 Cups Frozen Cranberries
I would guess that the ingredient amounts in this recipe would be suffice for three people. If you’re having more, definitely double up.
Cook the Cranberries
Warm a medium sized saucepan over medium heat. Then, when the pot is to temperature, add the butter and let it melt. After that, add in the syrup and mix it well with the butter. The goal here is to meld these two ingredients because later on, you won’t be mixing all that much. Wait a minute or so to heat the syrup up nicely.
Next, add in the cranberries.
Give the pot a few swirls until the cranberries are completely coated with the butter and syrup mixture.
Let the ingredients cook for about 5 minutes. Give the pot another swirl and lower the heat to medium-low and cook for another 5 to 10 minutes.
During this cooking time, you should hear the cranberries begin to pop. When they do this and when the popping begins to slow down, you’re done. Remove the mixture from the heat and either serve immediately or save for later.
Be careful towards the end. The cranberries are very soft and if you mix or disrupt them too much, you can lose the “half and half” look. Half of the cranberries have broken apart and have mixed with the sweetness of the syrup and the other half haven’t completely broken apart, leaving you with the tartness of the berry. It’s a magical combination that I’m looking forward to on Christmas morning.