Saturday, February 04, 2006

Cranberry Meyer Lemon Compote

At the Ferry Building in San Francisco last week, I noted nearly every indoor stand sold some kind of fancy jam, compote, or preserves--they all looked delicious, and in most cases were unique combinations, handcrafted with top-of-the-line ingredients. Yet, I have a hard time not thinking I could make that at home for a lot less. Perhaps its my Protestant Midwestern heritage, or just the thought of the unending jars of my grandmother's strawberry freezer jam from childhood (it wasn't until I was a teenager that I realized anyone actually bought jelly or jam at the store), but rarely do I part with $5-6 for these types of treats. Of course, this reticence to buy doesn't mean that I'm constantly canning in our kitchen (usually grandma's efforts still grace our breakfast table), so after this trip I decide to stop merely thinking I could make it, and actually do it. Hence, this compote, the offspring of leftover holiday cranberries in the freezer and some citrus on my counter. It's equally great on an early morning english muffin, or a late night bowl of vanilla ice cream.

Cranberry Meyer Lemon Compote

4 cups of frozen cranberries
1/4 c. honey**
1/4 c. water
zest and juice of 1-2 Meyer lemons
zest and juice of 1-2 oranges or other citrus

Mix honey and water in heavy bottom saucepan over medium low. Stir until honey is dissolved. Stir cranberries, zests and juices into pan. Bring to a boil, than turn down to a slow simmer, cooking until most cranberries have popped and you've got a soft and spreadable mess. You may need to add a bit more water, depending how cooked down you'd like your compote. Store in the fridge.

**You could use white sugar instead, and if you're not a sour person, you may want more honey here.


mmu said...

I've been wanting to make jam too, to go with homemade bread! And that tub of vanilla ice cream in my freezer gets ignored all the time, because I always think it'll do better with some chocolate sauce or fruit compote but I can't seem to work up the time or energy for it. You know, I have a bag of frozen cranberries, perhaps this is it!

Rorie said...

This sounds delicious - love the flavor combinations. I've never made any sort of jam or preserves but I think this is the year I start! Thanks for the idea!

Rodney said...

It can't work as a matter of fact, that's what I suppose.
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