Throw out your can opener and make Alton's simple, genuine cranberry sauce.
Alton Brown's Classic Cranberry Sauce
Our cranberry sauce begins with one pound of fresh cranberries rinsed thoroughly in rid of in under ripe or damaged goods. Now while those drain, we will construct the syrup in which the cranberries must cook. Small saucepan and into that goes one quarter of a cup of freshly squeezed orange juice, a quarter cup of 100 % cranberry juice. This is not cranberry juice cocktail, that won't do but don’t worry you can find this in the most Megamarts and certainly at health food stores.
Last but by no means least, one cup of honey and I’m using a clover honey here I believe. We’re ‘going to bring this to a boil over medium high heat and then reduce to a simmer for five minutes to concentrate the flavors. Please note that everything that’s gone in here so far is either a sugar or an acid, or both, why? Patience --
Now, enter the cranberries, cooked stirring often until the berries burst. Remember there’s air inside. When that air expands, there is going to be a bit of a pop. But don’t worry, if your pan is big enough, you won’t take a hit but be careful anyway. Now, in 15 minutes, this mixture I will start and thicken up a bit and you don’t want to let it cook more than 15 minutes because you might damage the pectins inside those berries and believe me we need those pectins.
Now let’s kill the heat. At this point, the pectins are fully active and ready to bind. The problem is, they're a little on the negative side. They don’t want to bind with each other which is why we add an acid, orange juice that helps to reduce the overall negativity. The problem is then, well the pectins don’t want to bind with each other. They want to bind with water. So we add something even more hygroscopic or water-loving which is sugar. The sugar takes over the water leaving the pectins to bind with each other. That is why you almost always see sugar and an acid like lemon juice and jelly recipes without the right amount of each.
There’s no way for the natural pectins to set unless of course you’re using a low sugar pectin calcium molecules and oh never mind. Let’s find a mold. Use a canning funnel to help with the loading. Of course if you don’t have a canning funnel, or you could use well anything else that’s kind of that shit.
There. Stash this in the old chill chest for about well six hours will set it but overnight will set it even better. Your patience will be you know. Now, I’m something of a purist and I prefer to keep my cranberry sauce on the simple side but you can feel free to spice things up. Well, you could add nutmeg to the mix or cloves, ginger and something tropical. You could stir in some finely men’s chilies or some chopped vanilla bean or I don’t know cardamom. Heck, if you make your own sauce, the sky is the limit. Just don’t tinker around in the engine room the amount of fruit, water, acid, sweetness and time need to remain a constant.