There is one thing that has always been on my Thanksgiving table, canned cranberry sauce. The fruit jello that binds the sweet with the savory on your Thanksgiving plate. Well, unless you’re part of the crowd that can’t have food touching. Even with the ridge lines from the can still imprinted on the side of the range gelatinous blob, it still was the part of Thanksgiving looked forward to most.
So then why, you are asking, are you posting this recipe for homemade cranberry sauce? Well, I’ve seen the light.
Long story short, I read a Thanksgiving meal article/interview with Anthony Bourdain and I really dig his show and attitude about food in general. In the article he boasted a big, traditional Thanksgiving Day meal with homemade cranberry sauce as a pivotal ingredient. So, well, poop…let’s go ahead and try it. Results? A-may-zing.
After searching the internet, comparing and contrasting recipes and ingredients and textures, and several attempts on the stove, here it is. The turkey day condiment you didn’t know you needed until right this very minute, homemade cranberry sauce with grand mariner + orange.
Cranberry Sauce with Grand Marnier + Orange
There are a few things that set this this sauce apart from it’s many sisters and brothers out there in the world wide web.
- It has booze in it,
- that booze is Grand Marnier, and
- do you need another reason?
Kidding (mostly). But seriously, that beautiful orange liqueur adds great depth of orange flavor without the metallic, sticky, orange-flavor you would get from something like Triple Sec. In combination with the orange zest and a little (that term is subjective) sugar, it’s a great balance of zesty citrus, tangy liquor, and tart cranberry. Cranberry sauce with grand mariner that’s about to be best friends with some turkey.
Though this certainly can be done without pulsing the whole cranberries, the combination of pureed cranberries with whole cranberries provides a great contrast of texture. Pulsing the fresh cranberries with the sugar in the food processor prior to going on the stove top, creates a spreadable and slightly crunchy texture that leaves you longing for a leftover turkey sandwich to smother. The whole cranberries invite a burst of zippy, tart cranberry for just the right amount of pucker.
Last of all, like all great recipes, this is easy peasy – pulse, cook, cool and you’re homemade cranberry sauce with grand mariner is ready!
Cranberry Sauce with Grand Marnier & Orange
Fresh orange zest & Grand Marnier come together with tart, fresh cranberries for a homemade cranberry sauce that will convert even the most adamant canned sauce lover!
- Prep Time: 5 mins
- Cook Time: 1 hour 5 mins
- Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
- Yield: 6 to 8 servings
- Category: Side Dish
- 1 bag (12-ounces) fresh cranberries, reserve 1 cup to add whole cranberries later
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons Grand Mariner
- 1/2 navel orange, zested
- Set aside 1 cup of whole cranberries. Add the remaining cranberries and sugar to food processor. Pulse until cranberries are in small pieces and sugar is incorporated. Mixture will be a light burgundy color.
- Combine ingredients from the food processor, orange zest, Grand Marnier and saved whole cranberries in a medium sauce pan.
- Bring heat to medium-high and cook until mixture starts to bubble, about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to low and cook for 1 hour.
- Transfer cranberry sauce to a heat proof container and cool. Though this can be served immediately, the texture is best if refrigerated for at least 3 hours before serving.