You may have noticed that I love the change in seasons. It signals new delicious produce becoming available that we have not seen in 3/4 of a YEAR! In my world, this is cause for excitement. When I spotted cranberries for the FIRST time at the grocery store the other day I was drawn to them like a magnet. Initially I thought I would make my Cranberry-Orange Pie…but after 10 years of playing with it, I’m considering playing with it some more before publishing it on my blog. I didn’t have time for that this week. What would I do with my beautiful cranberries?

I wanted to use the cranberries for something that would feel fresh. I should also confess, for anyone who doesn’t know me, that I have a sweet tooth. It’s genetic. My grandma Fischer used to put cookies out on the table the second breakfast was over.  I frequently try to trick my sweet tooth by making something fairly healthy that passes for dessert. Cranberry Salsa was the first thing that came to mind. The recipe I had on hand was a family recipe of a friend. Not wanting to step on any toes, I phoned said friend for permission to use it in my blog and the rigamarole that ensued seemed entirely too much work to bother with (phone calls to husbands and mother in laws were involved.) It was far too much bother. I decided to just do what I always do and look up a bunch of recipes online, take components I like from what I see, tweak it with my own ideas and hope for the best. I’m probably far more excited about this recipe than I should be but it turned out super delicious! Delicioso! (As Trinity would say. It’s her favorite Spanish word.) I’ll be making this a lot while cranberries are in season!

Cranberry Salsa

  • 12 oz fresh cranberries
  • 1/2 large Granny Smith apple – peeled, cored, and finely diced
  • 1 orange (zest and juice)
  • 1 lime (zest and juice)
  • 1/2 – 2/3 cup sugar – depending on how sweet you want it. I usually make it with 1/2 cup. Update: I now virtually always make it with 1/3 cup raw honey instead of sugar and whisk that with the citrus juices until they are blended instead of heating.
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno (or more if you like it hot!) – seeded and finely diced.
  • 2 Tbsp fresh, grated ginger
  • 3 Tbsp Tequila

Juice the orange and the lime into a small saucepan. Add the sugar and heat until the sugar is just dissolved. Set aside to cool.

Rinse cranberries and remove any stems. Combine cranberries in a bowl with grated ginger, orange zest, and lime zest.

Place them in a food processor and pulse until cranberries are finely diced.

Place cranberry mixture into a bowl. Add apple, cilantro, and jalapeno. Pour the citrus syrup into the bowl. Add the Tequila (and Triple Sec, if using) and stir to combine. DSC_0066 DSC_0068

The pairing of the tart cranberries, sweet citrus, and the spice from both the ginger and jalapeno are a fun combination of flavors. You can tweak it however your family prefers, more spice? less sweet? Play with it yourself and find what you like best. This is amazing with apple chips, home-made cinnamon tortilla chips, regular tortilla chips or multigrain chips. Our favorite is serving it with Sea Salt Pita Chips. It’s great as an appetizer or light dessert. It would also pair well with a grilled pork tenderloin, or perhaps served over a baked apple.