Cranberry Orange Compote


We’re well into the holiday season, and as much as I’m enjoying my pumpkin-infused recipes, as well as everyone else’s, it’s also time to start thinking about cranberries!!!

Every fall I make batches of cranberry sauces and chutneys early and freeze them, which doesn’t really make much sense. For one thing, I’m the only one who eats them in my immediate family, and so I always have leftover jars even after the holidays are over. I guess it just doesn’t seem like the holidays to me if I don’t make some kind of something with cranberries!

Today I’m making a compote. Compotes are pretty much sweetened, stewed fruits – sometimes mixtures of fruits, sometimes including dried fruits. A compote is not typically as sweet as traditional cranberry sauce. Of course you need some sweetness to offset the tart cranberries, but you don’t have to go overboard with the sugar. I mean, have you ever tasted the gelatinous stuff they sell in the can? Horrendously overly sweet!

However, if you do want a sweeter compote, just add more sugar! Or a little port! I’m not the cranberry compote police!

So here’s what I did:

Cranberry Orange Compote

2 bags cranberries
Zest of 2 oranges
Juice of 2 oranges
1/3 cup sugar

Sort through the cranberries in a colander, occasionally rinsing them with cool water as you do. Remove any discolored, rotten, or suspicious cranberries and discard.
Place the cranberries in a small pot. Add the zest, orange juice, and sugar.
Place the pot on the stove, cover it, and turn on the heat to low. You want to take your time doing this. The cranberries will slowly heat up, and along with the steam from the orange juice, and will gradually burst. This might take as long as ten minutes. At this point, remove the lid.
If much liquid remains, slowly cook it off, still keeping the heat low.
And there you have it. Let it cool, and use it as a condiment for pork or turkey, pair it with cheeses, or serve it over yogurt for breakfast. Room temperature or chilled both work depending which you prefer.

Get busy and make your cranberry condiments. They seriously take minutes to make. You’ll never buy the stuff in the can, ever again.

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28 thoughts on “Cranberry Orange Compote

  1. I have to admit that any type of cranberry condiment makes my heart skip a beat. I love cranberries and happily eat the leftovers after the big day. Thank you for the suggestion of serving it over yogurt. I’ve not tried that, but will!

  2. Until recent times the only whole cranberries to be found here were dried, but frozen whole berries are now available. I love their tartness and like you think a small amount of sweetening is all they need. This compote looks delicious. I think I’d enjoy it with pork!

  3. I make cranberry orange sauce every Thanksgiving, it’s funny I am the only one who eats it also but I make a ton and freeze it, I use it in apple pies also. Your compote is wonderful.

  4. Am always intrigued by fresh cranberry relishes and chutneys. The canned versions don’t seem like real food, but I imagine the fresh–your version especially–would taste amazing. Thinking I would like on sandwiches. Thanks for your post!

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