This is a holiday staple on Take Two, something we love to spread on bread (or eat with turkey!) and also give away as an edible gift. This year, I wanted to teach my kids the water-bath canning method and make some jars of preserves to give away. I thought I would share the recipe and process–if it can be done on a boat, it can be done anywhere!
Cranberry Apple Preserves
Prep time: 2 hours Makes: 3-4 pints (depending on size of apples)
- 2 cups brown sugar (Rapadura raw sugar, Coconut sugar or Turbinado sugar work well)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 cup orange juice (fresh-squeezed is best)
- 2 cups fresh cranberries
- 10 baking apples (Granny Smith or Pink Lady), peeled, cored, and chopped
- Place sugar, spices and orange juice in large pot.
- Bring to a simmer and add cranberries.
- Cook over medium heat until cranberries begin to pop. Stir with a wooden spoon, gently crushing the cranberries against the side of the pot.
- Add apples and cook over low heat, stirring frequently. Cook until tender.
- Meanwhile, fill a large stock pot or pressure cooker with water and bring to a boil. Add mason jars and lids to boiling water. Boil for ten minutes to sterilize. Remove jars from water.
- Use a blender to purée the preserves or leave chunky to use as a relish.
7. Fill Jars with preserves to within 1/2 inch of the top. Wipe the top of the jar clean, place lids on jars and screw on rings until finger-tight.
8. Lower the jars gently into the pot of boiling water. The water should cover the jars; if not, add more.
9. Boil jars of preserves for ten minutes. Remove jars carefully and cool.
10. As they cool, a vacuum should form inside the jars and suck the lids down, preserving the contents so they can be stored at room temperature. If, after cooling, a lid has not indented, or pops back up when pressed, the canning process has failed and you must store that jar of preserves in the fridge.
Enjoy on biscuits, bread, or as a relish with turkey or ham. Fantastic addition to the leftover-Thanksgiving-turkey sandwich. Happy holidays from the crew of Take Two!