Thanksgiving recipe video and tips: Mom Parsons' cranberries

Thanksgiving recipe video and tips: Mom Parsons' cranberries
(Los Angeles Times)

The basic recipe on the back of the cranberry bag is easy, but with just a little extra effort, you can create a really special sauce that exudes both tartness and sweetness.

This recipe, from the family of Times food editor Russ Parsons, has become a Thanksgiving favorite, and it's simple. Just be sure to leave enough time before serving for the flavors to settle -- about three days is ideal, though we've made it the day before and it turned out well. Also, be careful not to overcook the cranberries; they should pop when you bite. You can find the recipe below.


Craving more? Check out our handy holiday recipes and cooking tips page to help you with your Thanksgiving planning. Not only do we cover familiar holiday dishes, we share tips and tricks to save you time and energy during this busy time of year. And you can find all your Thanksgiving recipe needs in our California Cookbook. If you have any tips or questions you'd like me to explore, leave a comment or shoot me an email at


Total time: 15 minutes, plus 1 to 3 days chilling time | Makes 2 1/2 cups

    1 1/2 cups sugar
    3/4 cup water
    3 cloves
    3 allspice berries
    2 (3-inch) cinnamon sticks
    1 (12-ounce) bag fresh cranberries
    Grated zest of 1 orange

1. Bring sugar, water, cloves, allspice and cinnamon sticks to boil in 4-quart saucepan. Cook, stirring, until syrup is clear, about 3 minutes. Add cranberries and cook just until they begin to pop, about 5 minutes.

2. Remove from heat, add grated orange zest and cool. Refrigerate 1 to 3 days before serving. Remove cloves, allspice and cinnamon sticks before serving.

Each 1/4-cup serving: 132 calories; 1 mg. sodium; 0 cholesterol; 0 fat; 35 grams carbohydrates; 0 protein; 0.41 gram fiber.

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