Cranberry Week – Honey Cranberry Almond Bark

It was probably inevitable that cranberries would be associated with Christmas. Their bright, shiny red color and their winter availability primed them for use on the table and the tree. Slow to spoil, they hold up for the entire twelve days of Christmas and longer.

The earliest American Christmas trees in the 1840s were decorated with homemade ornaments of fruits, nuts, candies, and other “sweetmeats,” and it could not have taken long for the woman of the house to thread a large needle and string cranberries with popped corn to make a red and white holiday garland.

  • 5oz of white chocolate chips
  • 1 cup of sweetened dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup of sliced almonds
  • Honey
  1. Re-hydrate cranberries in water over high heat in a small pot until they plump up, remove from heat and liquid, set aside let cool.
  2. Toast the almonds over medium low in a small pan, tossing frequently until they are a golden brown, remove from heat, give it a rough chop, set asid
  3. Melt chocolate over a double boiler with the water simmering. Stir with a rubber spatula until it becomes a smooth texture, immediately remove from heat and pour into a 9×9 sheet pan with parchment paper on the bottom, spread evenly.
  4. Working quickly sprinkle the almonds evenly over the chocolate, then the cranberries and lastly, working from the top corner to the bottom drizzle the honey quickly and horizontally, not too thick or it will be too sticky. A very thin layer will almost not be seen but will be tasted. Let chocolate set before breaking apart and placing in an air tight container.

Cranberry Week – Scalloped Sweet Potatoes With Cranberries and Honey

It’s the end of Cranberry Week.  Only one more recipe after this one.  But the important thing is to remember to:

Scalloped Sweet Potatoes with Cranberries and Honey

Ingredients:

  • 6 sweet potatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups whole-berry cranberry sauce
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon grated orange rind
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons butter

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350°.
Cook potatoes until tender and drain; peel and cut into 1/2-inch thick slices. Arrange slices in a baking dish. In a saucepan, mix cranberry sauce, water, honey, orange rind, and cinnamon. Simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes. Add butter; stir until butter is melted. Pour cranberry mixture over potatoes, then bake, uncovered, for 20 minutes, or until glazed and hot.

Cranberry Week – Honey Whole Cranberry Sauce

Per Susie’s request…  🙂

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1/4 cup 100 percent cranberry juice, not cocktail
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1 pound fresh cranberries, approximately 4 cups

Directions

Wash the cranberries and discard any soft or wrinkled ones.

Combine the orange juice, cranberry juice and honey in a 2-quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the cranberries and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries burst and the mixture thickens. . Place in the refrigerator for at least 6 hours and up to overnight.

Remove from the refrigerator and serve.

Cranberry Week – Roast Pork Tenderloin With Honey Cranberry Stuffing

Pretty colors aside, cranberries have long been regarded as a wonder berry with numerous health benefits.

These mighty berries are bursting with vitamin C as well as having antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects on the body. Their health benefits can be seen from head to toe, inside and out. 

•  Higher levels of HDL (the good cholesterol) help your heart beat healthy. 

•  They will keep you sparky too. High levels of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties could protect the brain from memory and coordination loss caused by aging.

•  Cranberry consumption is especially beneficial to your ocular health – symptoms of sight degeneration and cataracts are proven to be significantly reduced.

Stuffed Tenderloin:

  • 1 1/2 cups sun-dried cranberries
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • Pinch ground cloves
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro leaves
  • 1(1 1/2 to 2 pound) pork tenderloin, butterflied
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, seasoned with salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Sauce, recipe follows

Directions:

Bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the cranberries, remove from the heat and let rest 1 hour, drain, reserving the soaking liquid and place in the bowl of a food processor. Add the pine nuts, cinnamon, cloves, honey, and a few tablespoons of the soaking liquid. Pulse until coarsely chopped, remove to a bowl and stir in the cilantro.

Place the tenderloin on a work surface and season on both sides with salt and pepper to taste. Spread a thin layer of the stuffing down the center, fold each side over the filling, and tie with a butcher’s twine and dredge lightly in the flour.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Heat the oil in a oven proof saute pan until smoking. Saute the tenderloin on all sides until golden brown. Place in the oven and roast until almost cooked through about 8 to 10 minutes. Remove and let rest 10 minutes. Slice into 1 inch pieces.

Sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely diced
  • 1 stalk celery, finely diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 6 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup apple juice concentrate, thawed
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons chipotle puree
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 2 tablespoons cold butter
  • Salt

Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onions, carrot and celery and cook until soft, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add the stock, juice concentrate, honey, chipotle puree and peppercorns, increase the heat to high and cook the sauce until reduced to 2 cups, about 15 to 20 minutes.

Strain the sauce into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer. Whisk in the butter and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Cranberry Week – Honey Cranberry Chicken Pecan Tea Sandwiches

This is the perfect sandwich filling to keep on hand during the holidays. You can whip up an elegant tea in minutes!

  • 2 c. diced cooked chicken
  • ½ c. cranberries, sliced or dried
  • ¼ c. cup pecans, chopped
  • t tablespoon honey
  • 3 green onions, sliced
  • Mayonnaise, homemade or Hellmann’s
  • White or wheat bread slices
  • Butter
  • Parsley for decoration

In a large bowl, combine first 4 ingredients. Add just enough mayonnaise to moisten.  Cover and chill to blend flavors.

Butter 2 slices of bread.  Spread enough chicken salad mixture on one of the buttered slices to make a thick sandwich. Cover with remaining top slice. Repeat with remaining slices of bread.

For best tea sandwich results, chill for at least 30 minutes before cutting. Trim off bread crusts and cut into triangles or squares.  Keep covered with a moist paper towel or in an airtight container until ready to serve.

Cheery Cranberry Cocktails

Have you ever noticed how many mixed drinks contain cranberry juice? Why is that, I wondered?  

The answer was easy to find. Cranberry juice is unique in that it can can be paired with a variety of flavors and will nearly always taste great.

In many mixed drinks cranberry juice is used to finish off a drink or to give it that “something special”. Cranberry juice’s sweet and tart flavor pairs well with practically any type of alcohol including vodka, gin, bourbon, rum and tequila. It even enhances the flavor of Champagne!

In addition to the drinks below, there is cranberry juice in The Samhain and also in The Bee-tini, which you can find in Cooking With Honey.

Honey Cranberry Champagne Cocktail

Ingredients

  • 1-ounce cranberry juice (sweetened)
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 wedge lime
  • Champagne or sparkling wine
  • Cranberries (frozen)

Directions

In a chilled Champagne flute add cranberry juice, honey and a squeeze of lime. Stir gently until honey is blended in.  Top off the glass with Champagne. Garnish with 3 or 4 cranberries.

Honey Cranberry Slush

Photo courtesy of Amy Marrero Doyle

Ingredients 

1 cup frozen cranberry juice concentrate

1/2 cup honey

juice of 1 lemon

1 (12 ounce) can chilled lemon-lime soda

1 cup bourbon

Directions

In a medium bowl, stir together the cranberry juice concentrate, honey, lemon juice, lemon-lime soda and bourbon. Cover and freeze overnight. It will remain slushy because of the bourbon. Scoop spoonfuls into small glasses to serve as a cocktail.

Recipe makes 6 servings

Cranberry Week – Honey Cranberry White Chocolate Cupcakes

Cranberries were probably a part of the original Thanksgiving feast, although not in sauce form. The Native Americans used them for food, medicine, and even dye. Most importantly, cranberries were used as a preservative because they contain benzoic acid, so they added the fruit to meats and grains to extend their shelf life. General Ulysses S. Grant ordered cranberry sauce to be served to his troops in 1864, probably to prevent scurvy during the winter. It was first put into cans in 1912 by a company that eventually came to be known as Ocean Spray. 

Ingredients:

6 ounces of white chocolate chips

3/4 cup of softened butter

1 cup of honey

4 eggs

1/2 cup of cake flour

1 1/2 cups of flour

1 teaspoon of orange zest

2 tablespoons of freshly squeezed orange juice

2 teaspoons of baking powder

1 1/4 cup of fresh cranberries

Cream  butter and honey until light and fluffy, at least five minutes. Add eggs one at a time. Mix in orange zest, juice and baking powder. Slowly add flours, scraping the sides after each addition. Lastly add cranberries and white chocolate chips. Bake at 350 degrees for 18-21 minutes. Cool before frosting.

Frosting and Cranberry Drizzle:

1/2 can of whole cranberry jelly

1/4 cup of cranberry juice

2 tablespoons of honey

8 ounces of white chocolate

1 cup of butter

1 teaspoon of vanilla

2 tablespoons of milk

3-4 cups of powdered sugar (or until desired consistency)

Melt white chocolate on a double broiler and set aside, cool completely before using.

In a clean pan add cranberry juice, honey and whole cranberry jelly and heat. Whisk and stir until smooth and blended. Set aside and let it cool completely before using as a drizzle.

In a mixing bowl cream butter until light and fluffy, at least five minutes. Beat in white chocolate until smooth and blended. Add vanilla and milk and mix thoroughly. Lastly add powdered sugar, one cup at a time scraping the sides of your bowl. Add powdered sugar until you reach the consistency you like. Cover and place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes before frosting.

Frost cool cupcakes and drizzle with cranberry syrup.

Cranberry Week – Wild Rice Pilaf With Honey, Dried Cranberries, and Pecans

Wild Rice is an aquatic cereal grain that grows “wild” in isolated lake and river bed areas located primarily within the continent of North America. It is also native to ecologically similar regions located on the continent of Asia. This evolutionarily ancient grain has been found in layers of the earth dating back some 12,000 years. In addition to its role as an important food staple for ancestral peoples, it has provided a unique habitat for fish and waterfowl for thousands of years.

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 1 Tb. canola or grapeseed oil
  • 3 large shallots, minced
  • 2 cups wild rice or 2 cups short-grain brown
    rice, or a mixture
  • 1⁄2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 fresh thyme sprigs or 1⁄4 tsp. dried thyme,
    crumbled
  • 1/2 tsp. fine sea salt, plus more, to taste
  • 1/8 tsp. freshly ground white pepper, plus
    more, to taste
  • 1⁄2 cup pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped
  • 1⁄4 cup minced fresh flat-leaf parsley

Directions:

Preheat an oven to 375°F. In a saucepan over medium-low heat, bring the stock to a simmer.In a heavy 2-qt. flameproof casserole over medium heat, melt the butter with the oil. Add the shallots and sauté until translucent, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the rice and stir until the grains are well coated, about 3 minutes. Stir in the simmering stock, dried cranberries, honey, bay leaf, thyme, the 1/2 tsp. sea salt and the 1/8 tsp. white pepper. Bring to a simmer, stir and cover. Transfer the casserole to the oven and bake until all the liquid has been absorbed and the rice is tender, 40 to 45 minutes.Remove from the oven. Remove and discard the bay leaf and the thyme sprigs, if used. Taste and adjust the seasonings. Stir in the pecans and parsley. Serve hot or warm.
Serves 8 to 10.

Cranberry Week – Honey Cranberry Chocolate Chip Cookies

The Pedigree of Honey

by: Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

The pedigree of honey

Does not concern the bee;

A clover, any time, to him

Is aristocracy.

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup honey
1 cup (2 sticks) butter
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1 cup dried cranberries
1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1 cup chopped nuts

Directions

Preheat to 375 degrees

1. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt until well dispersed.
2. Cream the sugar, honey, and butter together. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Beat the mixture until light and creamy. Add the extract.
3. Add the dry ingredients to the creamed ingredients, mixing until combined. Add the cranberries, chips, and nuts.
4. Drop heaping teaspoons two inches apart on an ungreased sheet. Bake for 9 to 10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack.

Cranberry Week – Honey Cranberry Bread Pudding With Honey Bourbon Spiced Cream

Did you know that cranberries contain more antioxidant phenols than 19 commonly eaten fruits? Antioxidants help protect our bodies by stabilizing free radicals we are exposed to everyday.

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon unsalted butter
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups Cranberry Compote or Sauce (see recipe)
  • 1 cup pecan pieces, toasted and rough chopped
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 8 slices day-old brioche, French bread or other white bread, crusts removed and cut into 1/2 inch cubes (about 4 cups)
  • Honey Bourbon Spiced Cream, recipe follows
  • Shaker confectioners’ sugar
  • Sprigs fresh mint

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease a 6-cup (9 1/4 by 5 1/4 by 2 3/4-inch) loaf pan with butter.

Whisk together eggs, honey, cinnamon, vanilla and cranberry sauce until very smooth. Stir in half-and-half. bread and pecans. Let the mixture sit for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Pour the mixture into the prepared pan. Bake until the pudding is set in the center, about 55 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes.

To serve, cut the pudding into 1-inch thick slices. Top with the Honey Bourbon Spiced cream. Garnish with confectioners’ sugar and mint.

FRESH CRANBERRY COMPOTE:

  • 1/2 pound fresh cranberries
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups water
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch

Put the cranberries, orange and lemon zest, orange and lemon juice, honey, vanilla, and 1 1/2 cups of the water in a medium-size nonreactive saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and cook for 8 minutes. Dissolve the cornstarch in the remaining 1/2 cup of water and add to the pan. Reduce the heat to medium, then stir constantly until the mixture thickens, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and cool completely. Yield: 2 cups

HONEY BOURBON SPICED CREAM:

  • 1 quart heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup bourbon
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Beat the cream and bourbon with an electric mixer on high speed in a large mixing bowl for about 2 minutes. Add the honey and cinnamon, and beat again until the mixture thickens and forms stiff peaks, another 1 to 2 minutes. Yield: 4 cups