Dana Slatkin

Harvest Cranberry Apple Sauce

cranberry applesauce

Photo Credit: Southernliving.com

My heartiest thanks and congratulations to all of you who shared your recipes in my Fall Cooking Contest!

Entries came from all over the country and beyond. Each recipe made me think of your warm, cozy kitchens and the comforting flavors of fall. There was a delicious butternut squash baked with coconut and pineapple concentrate; an ambitious Chai Caramel Pie (spanning 3 pages!); a unique warm apple salsa; a casserole of apples, sweet potatoes, dried cranberries and pears; Sweet Potato Pear Soup; a mac ‘n cheese with bacon (kudos to my youngest entrant, a 15-year-old from New Brunswick, Canada); plus colorful salads, decadent cakes, stuffings, frittatas, and even a smoothie.

It was a tough call, but after much debate, I chose the dish my family gobbled up the fastest, one that is easy enough for all of you to try at home, and one that is perfectly suited for this double-whammy month of holidays. It comes from Jessica Lane of Tempe, Arizona, a busy mother of five who admirably manages to make cooking from scratch part of her weekly routine.

For this rustic applesauce, Jessica likes to recruit whatever apples she finds appealing at her farmers market. When I used the Honeycrisp variety, the fruit remained intact like a relish; Granny Smiths resulted in a chunky/smooth sauce. Ultimately, the texture is up to you: if you prefer your applesauce completely smooth, just add a little more liquid (the cranberry juice gives it a rosy glow) and purée it in a blender. The recipe scales up or down easily.

Served with potato latkes (perhaps without the almonds), alongside the big roast, or on a beautiful platter of sliced turkey, it’s the perfect Thanksgiving-Hanukkah recipe mash-up for your holiday menu. Jessica adds, “My family eats it as is for a snack, warmed and poured over creamy vanilla ice cream for dessert, or spooned into oatmeal for a hearty breakfast to start the day.”

Keep up the good cooking, Jessica, and thanks for sharing some sweet inspiration from your kitchen!

Are you already composing your holiday menu? Here are some delicious ideas to mix and match. Remember…less is more. Keep your holiday sanity and let your company be the main dish!

Hors D’Oeuvres:
Savory Mushroom Pate

Warm Brie-Stuffed Dates + Pecans

Endive Leaves with Fig Jam and Blue Cheese

Momed’s Avocado Hummus

Nobu’s Roasted Mushroom Salad with Yuzu Dressing

Kale Quinoa Salad with Mustard-Maple Vinaigrette

Winter Chopped Salad with Champagne Vinaigrette

Brussels Sprouts Salad with Chestnuts and Pomegranate

Kale Caesar Salad with Miso Almond Crumble

Vegetarian Mains:
Quinoa Vegetable Latkes

Wild Mushroom and Potato Gratin

Vegetable Tamale Pot Pie

Potato Zucchini Latkes

Gluten-free Cheese Puffs

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Truffle and Lime

Vegan Creamed Spinach

Sweet Potato Coconut Crumble

Miso-Maple Glazed Brussels Sprouts

Sesame-Soy Roasted Cauliflower

Cinnamon + Apple Pie

Date Coconut Walnut Balls

Dark Chocolate Almond Clusters

Dairy-free Chocolate Sesame Panna Cotta

Dairy-free Pumpkin Pudding Gingersnap Pie

The November Farmgirl Giveaway is already up and running. Enter now for a chance to win a basket full of OXO goodies and a sleek digital scale from Escali!

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