Brown Sugar Pomegranate Cranberry Sauce

Brown Sugar Pomegranate Cranberry Sauce
I am becoming one of those people who extracts meaning and assigns personality traits based on someone’s favorite Thanksgiving dish. Pumpkin Pie? You must be strong-willed, because you waited through a whole meal before you got to the part you wanted. Mashed Potatoes? Fantastic in every way, because you clearly have taste (also, try mine; they are excellent). Turkey? Unpredictable, just like every recipe I seem to encounter. Stuffing? Beyond comprehension, as far as I am concerned. And I would tell you that those who love Cranberry Sauce are the ones who are superior-because, let’s face it, I like to give myself compliments-but really, I think there’s something deeper behind it.

For every table adorned with the typical, can-shaped, wriggling plate of store-bought cranberry sauce, I like to believe that there is one person who contemplates the existence of something more. Surely, there must be one person who kindly pushes that sauce around on the plate, knowing in their heart of hearts that they are looking into the gelatinous eyes of potential! I know because I used to be that person. Every year, I would accept as the cranberry sauce was passed my way, and each time I would ponder its tartness, savoring the sweet, red residue it left behind to mingle with all the other pieces of Thanksgiving I had collected on my plate.

I’ve started to wonder if I might be the kind of gal who roots for the Dark Horse, the creature that seems most unlovable out of all the options. Because here’s the thing: I learned in the last few years that, with a little love, I could take what was easily the most forgotten about, distasteful part of my Thanksgiving experience and turn it into the classiest of masterpieces. It may have taken 25 years, but it would appear that, at last, Slowandsteady won the race.

Deep, dark Pomegranate Molasses pairs with rich, homemade brown sugar and sweet, aromatic cloves to soften the natural tang of fresh cranberries. With a little bit of attention, and a lot of wonderful flavor, you might find yourself questioning your former Thanksgiving favorite. These days, it just isn’t Thanksgiving without the subtle pop of water-meets-sugar-meets-cranberry. And believe me, it pops.

One Year: Spinach with Warm Fig and Honey Vinaigrette and Honey-Roasted Root Vegetables.
Two Years: Sweet Turkey Chili with Corn, Kidney Beans, and Kale.

Brown Sugar Pomegranate Cranberry Sauce
Makes about 3 cups
12 oz fresh cranberries
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp pomegranate molasses
pinch of ground cloves

In a medium saucepan on medium heat, combine cranberries, water, brown sugar, pomegranate molasses, and cloves, stirring to combine. Bring to a bubble. The cranberries will begin to pop from the heat; let them. Continue cooking for another 10 minutes, stirring continually and gently mashing the cranberries each time. Pour the mixture into serving bowl and let cool completely. Refrigerate until ready to serve.


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  1. Jessamine in PDX

    As a kid I never ate the cranberry sauce. It totally creeped me out. Then, years later, I started to make my own and realized how good it could be. I always make a few different kinds throughout the fall and winter, often using oranges or cherries too. I love the idea of brown sugar and pomegranate. Will have to give yours a try very soon!


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