Really good cranberry sauce isn’t such a secret. It’s basically just a simple concoction of fresh cranberries, sugar, a little salt, and water. Boil for it for a scant five minutes, let cool, and it’s ready to go. Certainly not as nostalgic as the jelly mold sold in cans but comforting in its own way. Although the method described above is tasty enough, by changing a few ingredients and popping the cork on a bottle of bubbly, a whole other dimension can be added.
It, unfortunately, does make the dish just a little un-American. I’m fairly sure the Puritans didn’t have Champagne, not to mention the Native Americans. So it seems a little tragic to add. But it’s such a perfect complement to the cranberries. If your conscience gets the better of you, then just do what we did and toss about a tablespoon of the cranberry sauce into a wine glass and top with Champagne. It’s not exactly a Thanksgiving tradition, but here's to trying to make it one.
- 12 ounces fresh cranberries
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 tablespoons dried currants
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup Champagne, or other sparkling wine
Pour the champagne into a medium pot and add the sugar and salt. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.
Dump in the cranberries and currents, bring back to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Cook for 5 minutes.
Remove and let come to room temperature.