Wednesday, November 23, 2016


Tomorrow is Thanksgiving and I am looking forward to a big turkey dinner!  One of the things I most love is cranberry sauce - piled atop my turkey, or mixed into the dressing.  Yep... you can tell I love it!  When Thanksgiving is over, there are always the turkey, mayo sandwiches... with cranberry sauce.  Then a week or so later there are scones... with cranberry sauce.  Or roasted pork... with cranberry sauce.  Cranberry sauce never goes to waste here.

This is the recipe I've been making for years.  I typically have everything on hand except for one navel orange.  Because I love cranberries, I always have a bag in the freezer.  Remind me later, and I'll share my recipes for cranberry cake, bars and torte.  All delicious!

WHOLE CRANBERRY SAUCE.  Makes about 2 cups, or double recipe for 4 cups!!
*  1/2 pound fresh cranberries (okay to make from frozen, as is)
*  1/4 cup port
*  Juice from 1/2 navel orange (about 1/4 cup)
*  Peel from 1/2 navel orange
*  1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
*  1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
*  1/3 cup granulated sugar
*  1/3 cup toasted pecan halves, lightly chopped
Put all ingredients except the pecans in a saucepan.  Stir and cook over medium heat.  Stir occasionally and continue to cook about 15 to 20 minutes until the cranberries have split and the sauce has thickened.  Remove from the heat, allow to cool in a covered pan.  Stir back into the sauce the water that has accumulated on the cover of the pan, along with the pecans.  Cover and store in the refrigerator for several weeks.  Allow to come to room temperature before serving.

Add all ingredients except the pecans to the saucepan.

Cook until cranberries burst and sauce thickens.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016


Last night I was asked for my recipe(s) for spiced nuts.  Below you will find recipes for "Spicy Orange Pecans," "Roasted Almonds with Herbes de Provence," and "Tamarind Spiced Cashews."  The last is a recipe I got from my friend, Jeanne.  

These are great recipes for this time of year since they make great hostess gifts or gifts for those "hard to buy for" friends and family on our holiday gift giving list.  The other benefit of these is that they hold up very well in airtight tins or jars.  I don't have pics to share with you, but I can assure you that I have made these - many times!   Eat them as a snack, or add them to a salad.  They are delicious!

SPICY ORANGE PECANS.  Makes about 4 cups.
*  4 cups pecan halves (unsalted)
*  2 tablespoons orange juice (fresh from an orange)
*  1 large egg white
*  2 tablespoons orange zest (fresh from an orange)
*  1/2 cup sugar
*  1-1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
*  1-1/2 teaspoon chili powder
*  1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (to taste)
*  pinch freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 250º.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the pecans, orange juice and egg white and toss to coat.  In a small bowl, combine the orange zest, sugar, salt and spices.  Add to the nuts an mix to coat evenly.  Spread evenly on the baking sheet and bake at 250º, stirring every 15 minutes until the pecans appear dry, about 45 minutes.  Cool completely and store in an airtight container.  

*  1 tablespoon herbes de Provence
*  1 teaspoon salt, divided
*  1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
*  1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
*  1 egg white
*  2-1/2 cups whole blanched almonds
Preheat oven to 300º.  Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  In a spice grinder or clean coffee grinder, combine herbes de Provence, 1/2 teaspoon salt, red pepper, and garlic powder; process until finely ground.  In a medium bowl, beat egg white with a whisk until foamy, about 1 minute.  Add herb mixture and almonds, stir well.  Spread almond mixture in a single layer on prepared pan.  Sprinkle with remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt.  Bake until egg white is dry and almonds are lightly toasted. about 20 to 25 minutes.  Do not stir.  Cool completely on baking sheet.  Break apart to separate almonds.

TAMARIND SPICED CASHEWS.  Makes about 4 cups.
*  4 tablespoons unsalted butter
*  3 tablespoons honey
*  2 tablespoons light brown sugar
*  1 teaspoon tomato paste
*  1-1/2 teaspoons tamarind concentrate or paste
*  1 lb. roasted unsalted cashews
*  1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
*  Large pinch cayenne pepper
*  1 tablespoon ground garam masala
*  1-1/4 teaspoons salt
Preheat oven to 300º.  In medium saucepan melt butter, honey, brown sugar, tomato paste and tamarind.  Add nuts, coconut, cayenne, garam masala and salt, and mix.  Spread evenly on baking sheet.  Bake for about 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until mixture is toasted and sugar caramelized.  Sprinkle lightly with salt.  Cool.