Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Cranberry-Orange Salsa

Driving home from the chiropractor today (a long story, for a different blog), I saw what my friends and I refer to, seasonally, as The House That Christmas Puked On. It is, today, October 21st. Ten days before Halloween. And, lo, it came to pass that THTCPO is already putting up its Christmas decorations. There's a time and a place, people! Decorations go up after Thanksgiving! If you want to rush the seasons, do it the old fashioned way, and lose yourself in menu planning!

If you feel similarly, here's something to think about for your Thanksgiving or Christmas turkey, from The Great Salsa Book:
Cranberry-Orange Salsa

2 cups dried cranberries (about 7 ounces)
3/4 cup fresh orange juice
1 tablespoon minced orange zest
2/3 cup toasted pecans
4 teaspoons pure red chile powder.

Purée all the ingredients together in a food processor or blender.

Serving sugestions: With turkey, quail, or pork.
Yield: About 2 cups.
Heat: 2-3
Ooooo, a cranberry compote relying on dried cranberries, not fresh, frozen, or squidgy jellied out of the can! And with 4 teaspoons of chile powder, relatively mild -- it'll have spice but not fire -- so it should pass muster with some of the more conservative eaters at your table.

I'd like to try this with a selection of sausages. Grill or broil up the sausages, cut them into hearty bite-sized chunks, and use this salsa for dipping. A chicken-apple sausage would be great, as would a bratwurst.

In any given turkey dinner spread, I tend to devote more individual dishes to cranberry whatnots than any other specific foodstuff -- I like to have canned whole berry and canned jelly, and I must make a cranberry port compote from scratch. Can I add another cranberry dish? ...probably. It's worth considering.

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