Thanksgiving Recipes: Cranberry Conserve

by Cate on November 19, 2008

A very simple, very delicious recipe for Cranberry Conserve that will make a fan out of everyone who tastes it.

T - cranberry conserve

Jellied, whole berry, from a can or not, for a good 30+ years I avoided cranberry sauce like the plague.  Like black-eyed peas on New Years’ Day, I felt it was one of those obligatory things that I’d stick the tip of my spoon in, have a little speck and call it a day.  Blech.  But all that changed a few years ago when I discovered this recipe for Cranberry Conserve.  Given my complete and utter disdain for cranberry sauce, I’m not even sure why I made the recipe.  Probably for my mom, who likes the stuff.  But to think that I almost missed out on this one?  :::Shudder::::

I got it from a caterer a good five years ago, and it could not be easier to make.  The Neighbor Wife can attest to this, since she’s been making it ever since I first turned her onto it.  It needs just a few simple ingredients and barely any intervention from you, and you are rewarded with the absolute best cranberry sauce that will ever touch your lips.  I guarantee it.  It hit our menu in 2005, 2006 and 2007 …and a few years before Sweetnicks was born too.  It’s a tradition in our family, and maybe yours next.

Miss our first day of Thanksgiving recipes?  You can find the Make Ahead Mashed Potatoes right here.  Next up?  Stuffing.  Or dressing.  Whichever you call it, but the hands-down best-ever version here.  Tomorrow.

Until then…

Cranberry Conserve

4 cups fresh cranberries
2 oranges, peeled, sliced and quartered
1 cup raisins
1-1/4 cups water
1 cup chopped pecans (I usually skip)
2-1/2 cups sugar

In large saucepan, combine cranberries, oranges, raisins and water. Simmer until cranberries are soft (until they split) – this should take about 20-30 minutes. Add pecans and sugar, stir well and simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring often. Cool, then spoon into containers and chill. Stays good for about two weeks.

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

The Neighbor (Wife) November 20, 2008 at 5:42 pm

It’s is so easy. And before this recipe. I hated cranberry sauce too. I make it every year.

Try it and let us know what you think!


jancd November 21, 2008 at 12:57 am

I’m making this recipe this year. My mom always makes a raw cranberry/orange relish, but I think she will enjoy this one, too. I’ll let you know how it is received. Jancd


Sara November 22, 2008 at 11:27 am

This sounds really good, I usually make a cranberry sauce with vanilla bean and cardamom. I love the addition of pecans.

Saras last blog post..Harissa marinated tri tip with roasted vegetables


Cate November 25, 2008 at 11:30 pm

Jan – yay! Hope it passes the test. :)

Sara – mmm, vanilla bean sounds like a unique twist, especially with the cardamom. I imagine it gives it a little heat – yum.


Woodleygrrl November 26, 2008 at 8:54 am

I made this last night and my question is, does it tend to thickenup at bit as it cools? It is a bit runny and I am wondering how to fix it.


Cate November 26, 2008 at 9:17 am

Yes, it definitely thickens as it cools. Better now?


Woodleygrrl November 26, 2008 at 8:03 pm

YES….all better. Wonderful! I can’t wait to share it with friends tomorrow!


Chris October 15, 2009 at 4:01 pm

Thank you for this recipe. My mom always had the cranberry sauce on the table and I really never liked it. Now that I am cooking the Thanksgiving dinner every year, I like to try new recipes. I am really looking forward to adding this recipe to the menu this year. Thank you very much.


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