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This is that recipe that I dream about all year. Fresh cranberries only grace us with their tart, plump presence from about October to December. Originally from Ruth Cousineau, this is the perfect last minute addition to your feast as it is easy to make and enriches just about everything on the Thanksgiving table. For just five ingredients simmering on the stove, it tastes beguilingly complex. Tangerine juice and zest, fresh ginger, and plump golden raisins add a citrusy, spicy sweetness to tart, bursting cranberries.

Seeing as I’ve been horribly sick for nearly two weeks, this is the only item I had the energy to make for this afternoon’s family dinner. That said, it will be the perfect flair to a robust meal cooked with heart and a zesty dollop to dance on our leftovers. Enjoy your friends and family today, and if not, enjoy your wine. Cheers!


Cranberry Tangerine Conserve

Makes about 1 1/2 cups

  • 2 tight-skinned tangerines
  • 3/4 lb fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1 teaspoon grated peeled ginger
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • Remove a 4- by 1-inch strip of zest from 1 tangerine with a sharp vegetable peeler (preferably Y-shaped), then scrape off any white pith from strip. Squeeze 1/3 cup juice from tangerines.
  • Bring juice, zest strip, and remaining ingredients to a boil in a heavy medium saucepan, stirring until sugar has dissolved, then simmer, uncovered, until berries have burst, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove from heat and cool completely. Discard zest before serving if desired.