With Thanksgiving around the corner and the holiday season in sight, ’tis the season for fresh cranberries. Sure, they make a mean cranberry sauce or upside-down cake, but if you’ve tried one straight from the bag, you know cranberries are nothing short of pucker-inducing. So, I was skeptical when I first heard that sugared cranberries made a great snack. As the kitchen investigator I try to be, I had to see for myself.
You guys. These things are addictive. Soaking cranberries overnight in a maple-scented simple syrup transforms them from pucker-worthy to perfectly sweet-tart. Rolling them in superfine sugar adds a satisfying crunch. As pretty as they are tasty, they make a great cake or cocktail garnish. Make a double batch and wait for the rave reviews.
Makes 2 cups
1-3/4 cups granulated sugar
1-3/4 cups water
1/4 cup maple syrup
2 cups cranberries
3/4 cup superfine sugar*
*Don’t have superfine sugar? Throw granulated sugar in your food processor for 2-3 minutes to create the right texture.
In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine granulated sugar, water and maple syrup. Heat until sugar is dissolved, but don’t boil; you don’t want the cranberries to pop, just be slightly heated. Remove from heat and mix in cranberries. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate, covered, for 8 hours or overnight.
Drain the cranberries well, reserving maple simple syrup if desired. (Try shaking it up with rosemary, vodka and ice, then finish in the glass with a bit of sparkling wine.) Place superfine sugar in a shallow dish and roll the cranberries, a few at a time, in the sugar to coat. Spread out on a baking sheet and allow to dry completely before serving or storing in an airtight container. (This should take about an hour.)
The finished product will be sweet, tart and sparkly, and will keep for about a week. Use as a cocktail garnish, edible cake topper or pre-dinner snack.
We’ve teamed up with our friends over at DIYNetwork.com’s Made + Remade to throw a holiday party, and you’re invited!
Follow along as we craft the party decor, set the holiday table and cook up the menu. Along the way, you’ll get the step-by-step instructions and tips to throw a great party in your home. Catch up on all the posts here.