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Cranberry Potpourri Jam

[Photograph: Stephanie Stiavetti

This spicy-citrusy-sweet jam was inspired by a project I used to work on every winter when I was a little girl, making gifts to give away as Christmas stocking stuffers. A friend and I would sit down and make little packets of whole spices and dried orange peel, which we would tuck into tiny sachets of cheesecloth and tie with a bow.

Cranberry is the perfect base for cinnamon, nutmeg, and allspice, rounding out these sweet spices with an intensely playful tang. I've added a touch of brown sugar to bring these capricious berries back to earth, which elevates the warmth of the spices even more. This jam is perfect for stuffing homemade toaster pastries or slathering onto hot, buttered waffles.

About the author: Stephanie Stiavetti is a writer and cookbook author in San Francisco. Stephanie's cookbook, Melt: the Art of Macaroni and Cheese, celebrates America's favorite dish by recreating it with small production, specialty cheeses. Her food blog, The Culinary Life, is a repository for all things comfort food related, from savory dinners to transcendental desserts.

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