Cranberries are often described as antioxidant powerhouses, they do in-fact often outrank most other foods when it comes to the various antioxidant “power” rankings out there. In reality, none of these lists can really be used to measure the true healthful nature of a food. What we do know is that scientific research suggests the consumption of the kinds of antioxidants found in cranberries may be associated with a reduced incidence of urinary tract infections especially if they are recurrent. However, more work is needed to confirm this. Additionally, a serving (1 cup, 100g) is an excellent source of vitamin C and a good source of manganese and fiber.
Now, not many folks eat fresh “raw” cranberries, mainly due to the sour taste, but with Thanksgiving and the holidays just around the corner, now is the perfect time of year to incorporate this festive fruit into your diet. Whether you are making the whole Thanksgiving dinner or taking a dish to a friend’s house, add some cranberries to the meal with a nutritious and delicious cranberry sauce.
To capture the best nutrition from your cranberry sauce, DO NOT COOK YOUR CRANBERRIES instead blend them into a coarse sauce like consistency. Follow the recipe below to have a fresh, vibrant, bold, flavorsome cranberry sauce that the whole family will be coming back for more of – you’ll be the talk of the town over the festive season.
No Cook Cranberry Sauce
Makes about 2 ½ cups
- 1/2 cup walnuts
- 1 tablespoon mustard seeds
- 1 small red onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 small Thai red chili, seeds removed, flesh finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons dried cherries
- 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 cups fresh cranberries
- 1 tablespoon freshly chopped cilantro or parsley
- Pre-heat oven to 350°F
- Place the walnuts on a tray and put into the oven to toast, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
- At the same time, place the mustard seeds on another tray and put in the oven to toast or until they pop, about 3 minutes. Then remove from the oven and place into a small sauce pan along with the finely diced red onion, diced chili, dried cherries, maple syrup, sherry vinegar, nutmeg and salt. Gently warm on the stove until the onions are soft and the cherries have plumped up slightly. Then remove from the heat and allow to cool.
- Place the cold walnuts along with 1 ½ cups of the fresh cranberries into a blender and pulse 4 to 5 times, just enough to coarsely chop everything together but not to the point of puree. Tip out into a bowl and fold in the remaining whole cranberries, onion mixture and the chopped cilantro. Cover with plastic and let the flavors infuse for 30 minutes before serving.
Published November 1, 2017