SNOW…I knew we got some overnight because I could see that eerie glow through the blinds when I woke up this morning…not enough to close down the schools for the day but plenty to drive the kids into a frenzy and cause a 2-hour delay. Areas of the school district are hilly and the buses can’t make it if there is even a dusting of the slick stuff. It’s beautiful now but in about 2 hours it will be grey, slushy… and SLICK. Oregon drivers are terrible in the snow and either drive like old grandma’s (that’s me…LOL) or like crazy people who think their pickup trucks don’t need to slow down at all and pass the old grandma’s as if we are standing still. I can already hear sirens racing up and down the main streets to check out the fender benders that will take place all morning…that’s just the way it is here.
This is a good morning for me to stay home and do a little extra baking for the weekend. My son is going on a ski trip to Big Sky, Montana for the holiday so we are going to celebrate our Christmas with him on Saturday. I want to send him off with a big box of cookies and this snowy morning is a good time to start putting it together.
I love cranberries and CRANBERRY CURD is right up there with LEMON CURD on my list of favorite sweets. It’s silky smooth with a sweet tart flavor and can be used in so many delicious way…just like its lemony cousin. Try it on top of your favorite cheesecake (store bought works great and guests will think you make the entire dessert yourself). Make a heavenly cranberry mousse by folding whipped cream into the curd and spooning it into your best parfait glasses… spread it on warm biscuits or scones for Christmas brunch. Substitute CRANBERRY CURD for lemon curd in your favorite bar cookie recipe. I added pecans to the shortbread base I usually use and topped it with cranberry curd and a sliver of candied orange peel to accentuate the citrus in the curd. Don’t they look like CHRISTMAS?
Add a few extra bags of fresh CRANBERRIES to your shopping list this week. They freeze well and then you can enjoy them the rest of the year in chutneys, sauces and desserts. Cranberries are like pumpkin pie…we all love them but out of habit only enjoy them a few weeks out of the year. Homemade cranberry sauce is delicious with barbecued chicken and a good CRANBERRY CAKE is a real treat on a summer picnic.
- 5 cups fresh cranberries
- ¾ cup orange juice
- 7 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1-2/3 cups sugar
- 6 large eggs, lightly beaten
- Combine cranberries and orange juice in a saucepan. Cook over low heat until the cranberries pop, about 10 minutes. Press through a fine meshed sieve. Discard solids.
- Return the puree to the saucepan. Add the butter and sugar and slowly melt. Stir a little of the warm cranberry mixture into the eggs to temper them. Pour the warmed eggs into the puree. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens and coats the back of a spoon, about 10 minutes. Strain again through a fine meshed sieve. Pour into 5 half-pint jars. Cool and refrigerate.