When it comes to Thanksgiving, often you’re either in it for the main event—a gorgeous roasted turkey—or for the side dishes. I dream about giblet gravy, stuffing and mashed potatoes that round out the table. The other essential item on our menu is cranberry relish: I love how the burst of color and tart-sweet flavor brightens a meal that tends to be mostly beige. Best of all, this recipe can be made ahead and refrigerated up to a week in advance, meaning one less thing on the turkey-day to-do list. We wish you a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!
Paula’s Cranberry Relish
1 pound fresh or thawed frozen cranberries
1 1/2 cups dried sour cherries or dried cranberries
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup red wine (or pure, unsweetened cranberry juice)
2 pods star anise
1 cinnamon stick
1/2 cup freshly squeezed Satsuma tangerine juice (or orange juice)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1. In a heavy medium saucepan, combine all the ingredients and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook the sauce about 10–15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries burst and the texture becomes thick and jam-like.
2. Use a spatula to transfer the sauce into a heatproof bowl and let cool completely. Season with salt to taste and refrigerate until chilled.
3. Serve the sauce cold or at room temperature. Remove cinnamon stick and star anise just before serving.
The sauce will thicken upon standing. Stir in a few tablespoons of water, if desired, for a thinner consistency.