Fundamental but important to know. A tip in judging fresh cranberries: they bounce. You’ve seen those images of cranberry bogs in the ocean spray commercials, right?
That isn’t where cranberries grow–cranberries grow on vines. But they’re harvested (at least the ones that will be processed further, anyway) in water. That’s because fresh cranberries have pockets of air that make them float.
Those same pockets of air give a fresh cranberry, with taut skin and intact flesh, the ability to impact and rebound, like a tiny, anti-oxidant rich basketball. So if you’re not sure you’ve got top-quality cranberries, see if you can play jacks with it.
Whole Cranberry Sauce
Mix one cup each sugar and water. Bring to a boil and boil 5 minutes. Add two cups (one half pound) cranberries, cleaned. Cook 5 minutes or until cranberries stop popping. Do not stir. Cool in pan.