I've come to some conclusions about what I can and can't accomplish with Eliza; mainly, I'm going to have to use the same thread top and bottom or I'm going to continue to feel frustrated by it. I could go on and on about this, but I'll spare both of us a tiresome litany of whining.
It's going to be a busy day here. I didn't do any cooking yesterday, partly because of quilting woes, but also because I decided it was too soon to do what I'd intended. I think I'll get better results for having waited a day. It seems a good time for sharing an article from last year out of the New York Times, entitled "The United States of Thanksgiving". It contains recipes from all 50 states. Check out your state and see if you agree.
For Oregon, the recipe was Cranberry Sauce with Pinot Noir. It was a good choice for our state since cranberries are grown in Bandon, Oregon. We've driven by the bogs at this time of year, and they are beautiful when they are full of the red berries. Here's a little video from the Oregon State University Extension Service that shows the cranberry harvest in Bandon.
If you can't see the video, then click right here.
And of course, we are very proud of our Oregon Pinot Noirs. So, this was a good choice for Oregon, and I tried it last year.
(photo credit: Leah Nash for The New York Times)
This was a little runny even after cooking it down for 25 minutes. It was worth trying again, but I would reduce the amounts of liquid next time around. This is the original recipe, as written. Try reducing all liquids by 1/4 cup.
Also, I would strip the rosemary sprigs and chop the rosemary. I was not able to remove all the "needles" of rosemary after this was cooked down, and I didn't like the look or texture in my finished sauce.
This is best made a few days ahead to allow the flavors to blend. It was delicious, and definitely worth making again with the suggested changes.
That's all well and good, but I'm back to my old standby this year, and it's a good one. It's quick to make and the addition of dried cherries means that you get a little surprise in most mouthfuls. The cherries are very nice with the tartness of the cranberries. I found the recipe in our local newspaper a long time ago. I looked for it online, but couldn't find it anywhere, and so I'm going to share it here:
Cranberry Cherry Marmalade
1 cup water
1 cup granulated sugar
2 cups fresh cranberries
1/2 cup dried cherries
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoon firmly packed light brown sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1 whole cinnamon stick -- broken in half
2 teaspoons grated orange zest
Combine water and granulated sugar in medium, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir until sugar is dissolved, then bring to a boil without stirring.
Add cranberries, cherries, vinegar, brown sugar, ginger and cinnamon. Stir to mix, then bring to a simmer, lower heat slightly and cook until mixture is thickened, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in orange zest. Carefully, with tongs or a slotted spoon, remove and discard cinnamon stick halves. Cool mixture to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate.
NOTES : Marmalade can be prepared 5 days ahead; bring to room temperature 15-20 minutes before serving. It can also be frozen; defrost in the refrigerator a day ahead.
And before I leave this topic, let me just say that Thanksgiving isn't Thanksgiving without the jellied cranberry sauce from the can. Just sayin'...
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Usually I've already done my stitching for the day before I sit down to write this "letter to friends". Today I'm letting you know I'm taking the Thanksgiving weekend off from blogging. There's just too much to do, and if I do any quilting, I know my posts will consist mainly of complaining. I'm just going to give thanks for the immense privilege I enjoy at being retired and having the resources I need to enjoy my passion.
This morning I enjoyed reading Kathy Matthews' post about First World Quilter Problems, and it put everything in perspective. Take a look at that link I've given you and see if you don't agree.
For now...have a very Happy Thanksgiving. I'll be right back here on Monday, hopefully with a finished quilt.