Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Cranberry Salad and Cold Weather

Fairbanks is breaking all kinds of cold weather records this month.  Lucky us!  Good thing we have the beginning of the holiday season to keep our minds busy and our spirits bright.  One of the things I really look forward to is my mother Ruth's cranberry salad.  She always made it for Thanksgiving.  I make it all year, or most of the year.  I make it over and over in November and December for the holidays.  I make it in January for my birthday and then in February because it is so pretty for Valentine's day.  By then, I'm a little tired of it because I'm the only one in my house that will eat cranberries, I'll make it one more time in July and then I forget about it until next Thanksgiving.

The basic recipe comes from The Joy of Cooking by Irma Rombauer.  Not the updated version of the book, but the 1931 original version.  It is a tart, crunchy salad that puts that canned cranberry stuff to shame.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do, but don't expect me to share mine.

Cranberry Salad
1 20oz. can crushed pineapple, drained and juice reserved
1 Tbsp. (or envelope) plain gelatin
3 Tbsp. water
2 cups cranberries
1/2 cup sugar (less or more to taste)
1/4 tsp. salt
2/3 cup diced celery
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Drain pineapple, reserving the juice.  Bloom gelatin in 3 Tbsp. water.  Cook cranberries in reserved pineapple juice  with water added (if needed) to equal 1 cup.  Cook until the skins pop.  Add sugar and cook for 5 more minutes, mixture will become syrupy.  Remove from heat and add salt and gelatin.  Stir until gelatin is completely melted and mixed.  Let cranberry mixture cool about 20 minutes.  Add celery, walnuts and drained pineapple.  Refrigerate.

What is your favorite Thanksgiving dish?

November 23, 2011     Daylight 5 hours, 29 minutes, 54 seconds     Current Temp.  2 ºF

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