Do you have extra cranberries to use up after Thanksgiving? Try this Lemon Cranberry Relish. It couldn’t be easier. It works for Thanksgiving, but I’ll tell you a secret. I made extra this year so that I have some for Christmas too. That beautiful red color will be lovely on my Christmas table.
This recipe can easily be halved or doubled. Here’s what you need:
1 package whole fresh cranberries
1/4 cup chopped lemon peel or 1-2 tbsp lemon zest
Simply chop the cranberries in your food processor (or leave them whole if you want), cut up your lemon peel into little pieces or chunks (you could use lemon zest too if you don’t want the chunks of peel in there), put in a jar, and cover with honey to 1” above the fruit level. That’s it!
Swirl the cranberries around 2-3 times per day or whenever you pass by the jar to keep them well coated as submerged. After a couple of days you’ll notice that the honey becomes more liquid as the fruit release their juices into it. You can begin eating it at any point, but the flavor is best after a week or more of fermentation time.
Amazingly this is a fermented relish. The anti-microbial properties of the honey are acting as a preservative for the fruit long enough for the liquid to be released into the honey which then allows the honey to ferment. After fully fermented, which takes about 2 weeks (more like 4 weeks if you use whole cranberries) the this will last indefinitely in the fridge. If kept at room temperature it will continue to ferment and eventually turn to alcohol if left out long enough. I keep mine out on the counter, but it never lasts long enough to bother putting it in the fridge. We eat it up.
And feel free to play with flavors. I’ve also tried adding orange and cinnamon, but the lemon is my favorite.
This recipe makes a great jam substitute if you are trying to avoid sugar. I also use it in baking to make flavored biscotti or scones, or even as a flavoring or sweetener in my morning tea.