Travel, illness, cooking for a big event. There you have it….the reasons I haven’t posted in several weeks summed up succinctly and in order. In fact, the aforementioned big event is this evening so today’s post will be brief (in theory but you know how chatty I can get!).
These beauties are all over pinterest right now. They are gorgeous and ever so tasty! The recipe I had called for medium-grained sugar. I couldn’t find it. I had regular sugar, and caster sugar (super fine baking sugar), but no medium grain. I ended up purchasing decorating sugar because it was pretty.
As my cranberries were marinating happily in a bath of simple syrup I happened across a friend’s blog that included these berries on a delectable looking cake. (You should check it out! http://sweetbetweens.com/2012/12/03/cranberry-orange-buttermilk-cake/ ) She used super-fine sugar. I almost made the switch but in the end decided I had already spent the money on the big, pretty, crystal looking sugar so I may as well use it. The point of telling you this is that I used large sugar, she used super fine and my recipe called for medium-grain (whatever that is), so you could really use whatever sugar you want or have on hand.
Serve these as a garnish to cake, cupcakes, or dessert trays this season. Or, put them in a pretty bowl and munch away because they are seriously good! The crunchy, sweet exterior gives way to an airy tart center and they look like frost covered berries which is just so festive. If I had the will power not to eat them all day long I would have a bowl sitting out in my house all of December just to look at. 🙂
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 cups water
- 2-3 cups cranberries
- 1 cup decorating, medium grain (ha!), or super fine sugar for rolling.
Pour 2 cups water and 2 cups sugar into a medium saucepan. Heat just until the sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Rinse and drain cranberries, then place into a large bowl. Pour the cooled simple syrup over the top. Cover, and refrigerate overnight. I made these after dinner and stirred them every now and then to make sure they were all well coated in the syrup.
The next morning drain the berries. Pour some of the decorating sugar into a jelly roll pan. Place 1/3 of the berries in the pan and roll them around to coat. I actually just got out three jelly roll pans and did this three times, but you could remove the berries to another pan to dry and use the same one for rolling if you like adding more sugar before each batch. Allow them to dry for several hours. I’m told they are best if used the same day but I’ll do some testing and get back to you. Aw Shucks…guess that means I’ll have to make them again. 🙂
Update: I’ve been keeping some to test how they hold up over time. I have them sitting out on the counter. Day 6: still great!
I used them to garnish Cranberry Chai Spice mini cupcakes. They are all boxed up and ready to head to the Provo Library Ballroom! (For the recipe of these cupcakes see: http://www.beantownbaker.com/2011/10/friday-favs-apple-day-makes-cranberry.html)
More of the cranberries will be used to decorate the plate on which the cupcakes will be served. I’ll try to post pictures later. In the mean time…go get yourself some cranberries and make some of these beauties!
Here they are on the table last night. They made such cute little shadows on the table cloth!
And here is a photo of the whole table. I was almost done setting up at this point. It was a lovely evening! And now I am enjoying some coffee in my PJ’s with leftover biscotti. (Made by my friend’s husband who lived in Italy for a couple of years. Yum.) You could also put them into small paper cones and serve at a Christmas party or as take-home gifts from the party. I had a little too much fun photographing these!