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Cranberry Compote

Cranberry Compote

Linda Larsen
Cranberries are tart little berries that appear in fall and winter. They're traditionally used to make lots of holiday recipes, but are delicious any time of the year. When they're in season, I buy bags and freeze them to use in the spring and summer.

When you buy cranberries, make sure the berries are very firm and round, shiny, with no soft spots or bruises. Look for uniform color, although a few green berries are not a problem. There should be no juice or leaking in the bags. Just put the bags into a freezer bag, mark them with the purchase date, and freeze up to one year. Most recipes tell you to use the frozen berries in recipes unthawed, so they hold their shape.

Some of these recipes start with cranberry sauce. I prefer what's called "whole berry cranberry sauce" where the berries are discrete, not in a solid chunk that you cut into slices.

Enjoy these easy recipes now and throughout the year. Still others use dried cranberries, which are similar to raisins but have a tart taste and wonderful sweetness.

Start with Cranberries

  • Cranberry Walnut Compote
    I developed this recipe after my mom asked me to come up with something similar to a compote she bought at a specialty store. It's sweet, tart, and spicy, with wonderful cinnamon notes. Agave nectar, the sweetener in this healthy recipe, can be found at health food stores and in most large supermarkets.
  • Turkey Breast with Cranberry Stuffing
    This wonderful recipe uses dried cranberries in a classic sage stuffing. It's perfect for a smaller family, since only the turkey breast is used. If you want to serve more people, stuff two or three turkey breasts! If you'd like to make it in the crockpot, use this recipe.
  • Cranberry Oatmeal Bread
    I love this bread and make it once a week when cranberries are in season. The sour cream and oatmeal keeps it moist and add great texture. And the cranberries and walnuts add great flavor and crunch.
  • Chocolate Cranberry Mousse Pie
    Take a pie shell and five more ingredients for a delicious and beautiful dessert perfect for company. I love the texture and flavor in this wonderful recipe.
  • Salmon with Cranberry Sauce
    I think this recipe is incredibly beautiful, as well as delicious. And it's amazing that the whole thing is done in about 30 minutes.
  • Cranberry Grilled Chicken
    Although this is a recipe I usually make in the summer, you can grill it on an indoor grill or roast the chicken in the oven.
  • Grilled Brie and Cranberry Sandwich
    This four ingredient recipe is perfection, simplified. What more could you want?
  • Pork Roast with Cranberries
    Dried cranberries and cranberry juice cocktail combine with chicken broth to make a beautiful and delicious sauce for a tender pork roast.
  • Cranberry White Chocolate Muffins
    White chocolate is usually too sweet for me, but in this recipe it's the perfect foil for tart cranberries. These muffins are perfect for Christmas morning breakfast.
  • Turkey and Cranberry Sandwiches
    This recipe is the perfect way to use Thanksgiving leftovers. Havarti cheese, as it turns out, is a fabulous companion to cranberries!
  • Cranberry Turkey Puff Pastry Bites
    This is my favorite thing to make with Thanksgiving leftovers. It's the perfect little bite: crisp, creamy, sweet, tart, and savory all at once.
  • Turkey Fingers with Cranberry Dip
    After Thanksgiving, I like to serve lots of little nibbles, perhaps with a green salad and fruit salad, for dinner. This recipe, with a tart and spicy cranberry sauce to dip crisp turkey fingers into, is perfect.
  • Creamy Cranberry Molded Salad
    I have to have this salad every Christmas. Not only does it have beautiful Christmas colors, it has the most fabulous texture. Crisp celery and walnuts combine with marshmallows and cranberries in a creamy gelatin mixture. It's divine.
  • Cranberry Almond Green Salad
    Cranberries are whirled in a blender with mustard, garlic, and honey to make a superb dressing for mixed salad greens, slices almonds, dried cranberries, and red onion. Yum.
  • Cornbread Cranberry Stuffing
    I think I'll make two kinds of stuffing this Thanksgiving. This one, which is fabulous, and my great-grandmother's stuffing recipe.

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