These sugar-covered cranberries make a pretty red garnish on your favorite dessert or baked goods — like cheesecake, coffee cake, holiday fruitcake and fruit tarts or pies. But they can also do so much more! Some examples:
Adorn your cheese ball or cheese board
Cheesecake or cake topper
Add to a Pavlova wreath for Christmas
Fruit pie topper, use in custard pie
Drop them on to pancakes/French toast/crepes
Top Camembert or Brie cheese
Garnish a bowl of cranberry sauce
Top ice cream
On top of oatmeal
Holiday fruitcake topper
Serve them up with muffins or mini loaves of cranberry bread
Garnish custard, parfait or pots de creme
Use as a garnish for your roast turkey or served atop a savory pork roast
Add them to a cracker topped with a smear of cream cheese and a dollop of cranberry sauce for an elegant appetizer
They are also the perfect accompaniment to cocktails. Drop them in, or line them up — like on a skewer, umbrella, tiny sword or toothpick — and they become a great burst of color and flavor when added to a chilled bubbly beverage, a hot mug of cider or mulled wine, floating atop a pitcher of sangria, or on a punch with some orange slices.
Feel free to experiment a little with your berries. While most of us have granulated sugar on hand, you can also try out different types of sugar depending upon the effect you want. Cane sugar or sanding sugar have a larger grains that will create a more sparkly coating, while superfine caster sugar creates berries that look like they have a light layer of winter frost coating them.
To store your cranberries, place them in a container with an airtight lid and a layer of rice in the bottom to absorb moisture. This will keep your cranberries firm and fresh for about two days. (They are addictive to eat, so they probably won’t last that long!)
Yield: 2 cups
2 cups granulated sugar, plus ¾ cup for rolling cranberries in
2 cups water
2 cups fresh cranberries
In a small saucepan, bring 2 cups sugar and water to a simmer. Stir well to dissolve sugar.
Remove pan from heat and set aside, allowing the mixture to cool for 15 minutes.
Stir in cranberries. Cool completely. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Strain cranberries. (Be sure to reserve the extra syrup to use for another recipe such as our a cranberry cocktails.)
Spread ¾ cup sugar on a parchment-lined, small baking sheet. Toss cranberries in a few at a time, and gently shake and jiggle to completely coat cranberries.
Transfer sugared cranberries to a clean baking sheet and allow to set for about 1–2 hours, or until dry.
To store, transfer to airtight container and refrigerate.
Check out these recipes to up your kitchen game:
Hard-boiled eggs: Two easy ways to hard boil eggs to perfection
Creamy risotto: Pearl couscous is the trick ingredient for creamy risotto
Fried rice: The secret to making great fried rice at home
Mustard makes it better: How to use mustard not as a condiment but as an ingredient
Cranberry sauce: Three cranberry sauce recipes you need to try
Sugar cookies: 'The best sugar cookie I've ever baked.' Here's the recipe.
Kale can be tough: Raw kale can be tough. Here's how salt can help
This article originally appeared on Grateful: Sugared cranberries: How to make the gorgeous, versatile garnish