Julia Child’s Cranberry Relish, Still

To paraphrase a sitcom on TV…

“It was 198-something and Julia Child was the food editor for Parade Magazine.”

Ms. Child published an entire Thanksgiving menu; which I actually made – even to the point of following her instruction to cut the breast out of the raw turkey, then add the stuffing and pop the breast on top for roasting. When it came time to serve the bird, you simply lift the breast off and the main body is now a serving dish of stuffing.


I did that.


What I have done every year since is make this cranberry relish.

It is simple. It is fast. And it is tasty.

Note: for some reason, this year, the cranberries at my market were packed in smaller than I am used to eight ounce bags, so this version of the relish is a little bit different from the original, which called for three pounds of cranberries. It still tastes wonderful, and actually, yields a more manageable (for my household) amount of cranberry relish.

•24 oz cranberries
•Zest of 2 oranges
•Zest of 1 lemon
•1 cup sugar
•2 tsp ground fresh ginger
•1 cup orange juice
•1/4 cup lemon juice
•2 tbsp Cointreau (optional, but nice)

Wash and sort through the cranberries, discarding any woody stems or mushy berries and add to a large pot.

Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a “boiling over” boil for two or three minutes, stirring very often, until the berries have burst.

Remove from the heat and set aside to rest for 30 minutes. The relish will thicken and jell as it cools.

Give it a taste – Ms Child always noted that, if you like, you can add more sugar, but to “recall that this is a relish, and should not be too sweet.”

I’ve always found it perfect as it is.

Store, tightly covered, in the fridge until needed. This batch gave me two, very manageably-sized bowls.

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