Cranberries Go Way Beyond Thanksgiving

 

If you think that cranberries should only be eaten at Thanksgiving, you’re missing out on the multiple health benefits of this little red gem. Multiple studies have found that the profile of cranberries biologically active components set it apart from other berries.

As you know, daily consumption of a variety of fruit is necessary to promote the intake of a wide variety of phytochemicals which will ultimately improve our overall health. Berries can play an important role in that mix of fruits. The lonely, yet lovely, cranberries contain vast amounts of compounds called polyphenols, which deserve a place in your diet beyond their annual appearance on the Thanksgiving table.

The polyphenol compounds in cranberries include remarkably high levels of anthocyanins, which contribute to the berries bright red color. Yes, they are quite tart, but toss in a bit of sugar, ginger & citrus & you have a powerful, delicious bowl of nutrition. Being that cooking is the healthiest way to eat, I am naturally referring to whole cranberries, not the jellied form which is processed and canned. Spend a few minutes to prepare the following recipe & I promise, you will find yourself stocking up on fresh cranberries & freezing them to prepare them throughout  year.

Below is the recipe I follow. Over the years, I have reduced the amount of sugar, (I use closer to 1/3 cup) as I am trying to de-program my taste buds,  & find that I enjoy them even more!

Cranberry Pecan Relish                                                                                       imagesJAX29BXA

1/2 cup         sugar

½ cup           orange juice

¼ cup            water

1 Tbsp            grated orange peel

½ tsp            ginger

4 cups           cranberries

½ cup           roasted, chopped pecans   (place pecans on pan in toaster oven & toast for 2 or 3 minutes)

Bring first 5 ingredients to simmer over medium heat. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Add berries & stir until they pop. Stir another 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in pecans. Refrigerate.

Have a Healthy Thanksgiving!

Liz

 

 

 

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