A vivid and incredibly simple fresh cranberry relish recipe with apple, orange, and ginger.
Sometimes (most of the time), when I write a to-do list, I include something I’ve already done or at least something very easy. Likewise, I include myself in any list of things I need to bring somewhere: “Keys, me, shoes, sweater, bag.” It’s a built-in guarantee of productivity or organization.
Cranberry Relish: Simple and Delicious
In the madness of Thanksgiving prep, this fresh cranberry relish is my to-do list guarantee. It’s the one Thanksgiving dish that can be completed and crossed off the list in minutes flat. If it didn’t have amazing flavor, I’d probably still keep it on the menu. But I’ve never needed to make that call, because it is delicious.
When it comes to cranberry sauce, mine is a house divided. Everyone besides me prefers a traditional cooked sauce, whereas I spend the rest of the year craving the entrancing sweet and sour interplay and deep ruby color of this cranberry relish. My usual recipe has four ingredients: cranberries, a whole orange, sugar, and a tiny pinch sea salt. In an attempt to win hearts and minds this year, I’ve tweaked things. There’s a real pleasure in plopping an entire orange in the food processor, but to cut back on bitterness, I used only zest and flesh. An apple mellows the tartness while also adding structure, while cinnamon, ginger, and just a drizzle of balsamic unite the flavors beautifully creating a complex array of tang, brightness, heat, and spice.
Thoughts on the recipe: since this recipe uses the whole orange, it’s best to opt for organic. A redder apple will make for the most saturated hue. Relish will keep well sealed in the fridge for up to 5 days.
A vivid and incredibly simple fresh cranberry relish recipe with orange,apple and ginger.
- 2 cups fresh cranberries (8 ounces), rinsed and picked over
- 1 large seedless orange , scrubbed
- 1 medium apple , cored and rough chopped
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
Use a peeler to peel all of the zest from the orange, then use a sharp knife to cut off the white pith. Reserve orange segments and any juice. Chop zest into fine strips; reserve 1 tablespoon for garnish. Discard pith.
In the bowl of a food processor, pulse to combine orange segments, apple, ginger, balsamic, cinnamon, and sea salt. Add cranberries, orange zest, and sugar, and pulse until mixture is well combined but still has a bit of texture. Spoon into a container with a tight-fitting lid and chill, preferably overnight.
Garnish with reserved orange zest before serving.
This looks gorgeous, and I love the color. I love a chunky cranberry sauce, but my husband likes it smooth. Maybe someday I’ll make this one in addition to my usual for Thanksgiving.
How much sugar is in this recipe?
Thanks for catching my sugar omission – I want the relish to be tart, but not THAT tart. It’s a half cup. I’m updating the recipe right now.
This is so delicious. I made it for Christmas dinner at my boyfriend’s mother’s house and I ended up leaving the leftovers there for her to enjoy finishing off, because she was over the moon with it. It was so nice to have something so fresh. Left out the cinnamon this time for someone at the dinner who doesn’t like it, but it was delicious without it. Will definitely make again and again. YUM! Thanks for making me look so good. 😉
just made it – it’s tasty – looking forward to see how it is in a couple of days. you left out cinnamon in the instructions. 🙂
This recipe is amazing! I served it and my guests freaked out. Thanks so much. I’ll put this in my debrief Thanksgiving notes so I will remember to make it next year! Happy Holidays!
I wondered if I would wish I had made a cooked sauce instead, but this banished all doubt. Turns out it’s not only good on a plate with turkey but as a breakfast topping too. Made my morning bowl of oats into something sweet-tart, fruity and gingery (and with all the orange, apple, and berry goodness, why shouldn’t it be an early-morning treat?). Yogurt seems like another good candidate to be improved by the addition of this relish (we could call it a compote, couldn’t we?).