Friday, November 14, 2014

Not Just for Thanksgiving Day

A few years ago it occurred to me that cranberry sauce didn't have to be limited to Thanksgiving Day. After all, I usually put extra bags of berries in the freezer for muffins for coming months. I realized that nothing was stopping me from making cranberry sauce more than once or twice a year. 

Not only is a dab of cranberry sauce on my mother's recipe for cornbread dressing my favorite food of the Thanksgiving Day Dinner--well, that and pecan pie--but making cranberry sauce is so satisfying to make.

Cranberries seem to please all five of the senses. The cool tactile sensation I feel as I pour them into the palm of my hand to be inspected for stems or mushiness before adding to the sugar and spiced boiling water.

I look at the glistening berries and can't imagine a prettier color than these ruby globes. 

The friendly hissing and popping I hear as I let them boil for just 5 minutes to leave plenty of them whole before lowering to simmer for an hour.

And that scent? Cranberries combined with a tiny pinch of cloves and ginger and a little more of cinnamon? Especially if it's Vietnamese cinnamon? The scent perfumes the house, as evocative of Thanksgiving as watermelon is of the Fourth of July, or spicy fruitcake is of Christmas.

Yes, few foods please my eye more than the color of cranberries, in the bag, in the hand, in the pan, or on a silver spoon as it approaches my lips. The perfect juxtaposition of cold cranberry sauce eaten with hot cornbread dressing and a sliver of turkey as a condiment.

And then I taste it. And it's so good. Even without the cornbread dressing that will come later in the month. Actually, I plan on trying out a suggestion I read in an old 1950s magazine…a dollop of cranberry sauce on a cheese omelet. That sounds intriguing.

Now to show a picture that hopefully only my nearest and dearest of family and friends have stuck around for through the end of this post. I finally had a good haircut after six months of growing out a really bad haircut. Here I am afterwards at the grocery store buying some more cranberries. 

Windblown and feeling slightly shorn but knowing from the way it felt that it was a good haircut and that a second haircut a couple of months from now would finally eliminate the bad haircut that depressed me for months. Here is a close up after we got home.

Now, if I can just buy some foundation that I've been out of for two years--and not eat too much cranberry sauce, and pecan pie. [You have no idea how brave this post was of me, and to actually hit Publish. Of course I did schedule it for 24 hours later in case I wake up in the morning and decide to hit Delete.]

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