As your correspondent on things that are Important in New England, I’d be negligent in my duties if I didn’t take the time to speak with you about the cranberry. Cranberries! Such New England-y little bitches! All tart and pucker-y! And this New England-y little bitch loves them. (This New England-y little bitch also knows several hundred things to do with them, but we don’t have much time here so we’ll keep it to one pretty easy and terribly impressive thing to do with them for the sake of this exercise.) And so it is with love and only the slightest bit of judgment about the fact that you’ve spent decades serving that jellied insult to the fine bogsmen of coastal Massachusetts that I share my recipe for Outré Cranberry Sauce.
This is really very simple, and if you’re a person who doesn’t cook you should feel okay about signing on to be in charge of the cranberry sauce on Thanksgiving because generally cranberry sauce is so easy to make. (Do you need a super basic recipe because you can’t manage a recipe with more than 3 ingredients? Sure, I’ve got one of those!)
Put two cups of cranberries in a large saucepan and stir until they begin to burst. This will probably take 3 to 5 minutes, and if you’re anything like me and you startle easily, you may want to take a Xanax beforehand. Hell, take one anyway—the entire family is coming over, you’ll need it for when your aunt asks loudly over the antipast' when you’re planning to find a nice boyfriend and settle down. “I think your mother wants grandchildren!” We recommend: “Well Auntie Bianca, Mommy should have thought of that before she decided to have only one child, now shouldn’t she have?”
I’m just not sure that I need to be saddled with a lifetime of cleaning up someone else’s boogies because my mother failed to hedge her bets and have that second kid back in the late 70s.
Once the cranberries have joined you in coming apart at the seams, add 2 cups of red wine—surprise! There’s wine in the cranberry sauce!—and ½ a cup of brown sugar and boil that up until it reduces to about 2 ½ cups. About 15 minutes? Drink the rest of the wine while this is happening! Hey, is it hot in here? It’s hot in here. Could you be a love and bring me an ice cube?
To the reduced cranberry wine potion, you’ll add a ¼ cup of crystallized ginger that you’ve minced up nicely, a ½ teaspoon of curry powder, a ½ teaspoon of cinnamon and a ¼ teaspoon of black pepper. I know! Is crazy! I told you it was outré! But also delicious and kind of pretentious and these are both qualities I can get behind. I may not have children, Auntie Bianca, but I have a life that calls for putting wine and crystallized ginger in my cranberry sauce whereas you drive a PT Cruiser. And it’s purple.
As this is the season for giving thanks, and because at heart I’m a sentimental old sap, these are just a few of the many, many things I’m Thankfawl for this year:
• The calming effect of ‘In the Weeds’
• The ‘DOODY’ tag
• Editable comments!
• Balk’s imaginary friend, Science
• Miles Klee and his deli slicer fantasies
• Alt text
• The Incredible Hulk’s author page
• The many, many things for which Dave Bry is sorry
• A lady home to call my own
• 4:20 posts
• Screen Name
• “Some Level of Online Success”
• Harry William Cyphers IV
• Motherfucking Negroni season
Jolie Kerr is also thankful for wine. And ice.
Do you have an eccentric, unusual or just highly specific family Thanksgiving recipe? Let us know. If you eat something, repeat something!