Early Holiday Cheer
The holiday spirit is falling a bit prematurely in my life. Three times in the past week I have had to remind myself that it is Halloween, and not Thanksgiving or Christmas. My mom is here this weekend (we are doing the breast cancer walk tomorrow, as long as it doesn’t snow!) and that is a holiday and cause for celebration itself. Throw in a brisk walk in the Boston cold, hot tea on the couch, and a viewing of Love Actually and it is hard for my mind to believe that it’s not Christmas! Add some food gifts from Costco and it is even worse! (Thanks for stocking me up on almond butter, raisins, and hot chocolate, Mom!)
Moving backwards through the week, Marie and I turned on Christmas music the day before my mom’s arrival to add a little cheer to our apartment clean up. October is way too early for Christmas music, but the snow that night made it hard to believe it was October, so we just stayed in the fantasy land. Earlier in that evening, another holiday mix-up played with my premature holiday emotions. At my Bible study, our weekly pot luck turned into a Thanksgiving feast, complete with my homemade cranberry sauce! Twelve us shared chairs around two dining room tables, enjoying fall food favorites and talking over each other like real families do.
Holiday spirit or not, this cranberry sauce is a perfect fall treat. It is inspired by the cranberry sauce that my mom makes with dried apricots and orange juice, but adapted to use up what I already had on hand. It is a great addition to a holiday spread, or can be used to make a special breakfast toast treat with a bit of cream cheese. Spread the early holiday cheer and make this soon!
Question: What reminds you of the holidays?
Homemade Cranberry Sauce
1 cup fresh cranberries
2 1/2 cups water
1 bag green tea
2 clementines (or 1 orange)
1/2 cup unsweetened apple sauce
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
Cover the cranberries with 2 cups water; add the green tea bag and bring to a boil. Allow to boil for 20 minutes, or until the cranberries have burst and most of the liquid has boiled off. Remove the green tea bag. Cut the oranges into small pieces, then add with 1/2 cup water, apple sauce and brown sugar. Add cinnamon. Allow to heat for another 20 minutes over medium heat until the sauce is thick and fully combined. Allow to chill. Serve cold.