Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Cranberry Sauce

I love cranberry sauce with turkey and chicken throughout the year, so when cranberries come into season in the fall, I buy several bag fulls and preserve enough for the year. It's easy to do and the result tastes so much better, in my opinion, than anything commercial. 

Cranberry Sauce

4 cups fresh cranberries, washed and drained
2 cups water
1 stick of cinnamon, 3-4 inches
2 cups white sugar
1 teaspoon orange zest

Bring the cranberries, water, and cinnamon stick to boil in a large pot over high heat. When boiling, reduce to medium low and simmer 20 minutes. You will hear the cranberries go pop, pop, pop - a lovely sound. 

Add the sugar and simmer another 5 minutes. Stir in the orange zest for the last minute or so.

Pour into hot, sterilized jars and seal with lids that have been boiled for 5 minutes. Screw on the lids finger tight and leave the jars to cool. You'll hear the lids pop as they seal.

Yields about 4 half-pints of cranberry sauce.

The cinnamon stick and orange zest could certainly be left out if you prefer a sauce with pure cranberry flavour. 

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

Cooler nights mean cooler days which means soup is so appealing. I could eat soup every day. This is almost a non-recipe, consisting of just 5 ingredients (plus seasoning.) It's similar to the Ginger-Warmed Butternut Squash Soup recipe posted in January, but without the ginger and pear. It's filling, homey, and warming - and with some grilled cheese sandwiches - makes a lovely supper. 

 Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

1 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-2 inch cubes
1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
1 Tablespoon olive oil
4 cups chicken broth
2 Tablespoons heavy cream
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 F. Toss the squash cubes and onion quarters with the olive oil. Spread on rimmed baking sheet and roast for about 40 minutes, or until tender and browning.

Place the vegetables in a large pot, add the chicken broth and bring to a boil. Simmer for about 20 minutes. Cool slightly, then puree. Add more broth or water if the mixture is too thick. Adjust seasonings, Just before serving stir in the cream. 

For a fun presentation, drizzle a bit of cream on top of each soup bowl and sprinkle with a few sunflower seeds.