"Place, with a trace of humanity" Photography/Photo of the Day/Pittsburgh

Once a Year Recipe/Ritual

The annual making of the cranberry-orange relish. I don’t make this any other time of year.I’ve heard lots of different renditions of cranberries and everyone has their favorite.  My mother used to use a metal meat grinder and screw it onto a table or chair with a woven potholder to keep the wood from being marred. Her recipe was strictly cranberries and navel orange.  I add a Granny Smith and today a HoneyCrisp as well. I used to have one of those grinders and ground relish with Mark when he was a boy in the same manner as my mother.  My friend J from Omaha gave me her MagiMix French Processor when she got a Cuisinart.  That was more than 25 years ago and it still works. It has a European plug so I have to keep a little extra piece to plug it in.  So two bags of cranberries, washed and drained, two oranges, two apples(peel on) 1 3/4 C sugar.

That is all there is to it. Refreshing and tart and sweet simultaneously.  And thanks to Susan K for the Turkey towels.  Very festive.

Happy Thanksgiving.  I will put the bowl in a cardboard box so it doesn’t spill and drive to dinner at the other Grandma’s.

19 responses

  1. This sounds delicious, Ruth. I’ve seen and tasted cranberries with orange but never apple. It’s easy enough, though, and I will definitely give it a shot. Thanks for sharing your Mother’s recipe with us.


    November 24, 2011 at 12:28 am

  2. Simplicity is certainly the secret to great food, I think! This sounds delicous:)


    November 24, 2011 at 1:11 am

  3. Toni

    My mom also had one of those meat grinders that attached to the table – I remember her grinding ham for ham salad.
    Nice to hold onto special once a year dishes! Especially when they are so good!
    Happy Thanksgiving!!!!


    November 24, 2011 at 6:48 am

  4. MJPM

    My Favorite! Can’t wait! Happy Thanksgiving!


    November 24, 2011 at 7:09 am

  5. Vincie

    Yum! Happy Thanksgiving!


    November 24, 2011 at 7:39 am

  6. Rob

    My grandmother did the exact thing your mother did making this relish. I inherited her metal grinder and every year as the boys grew I would attach it to the same stool my grandmother would sit on while she baked to make this once a year treat. It was the same recipe as yours. We did this for years until the boys “were too old” and then I did it on my own. Unfortunately, I didn’t make it this year as we are headed to a friend’s home. I think I will make it anyways. You are an inspiration…in so many ways. Happy Thanksgiving Ruth.


    November 24, 2011 at 8:09 am

  7. Kristin

    Happy Thanksgiving to you!! Relish looks yummy! I make one too.


    November 24, 2011 at 8:20 am

  8. Lois I. Greenberg

    Happy Thanksgiving and thanks for all your creative sharings. You bring such lovely gifts all year round. Love and gratitude, Lois


    November 24, 2011 at 8:40 am

  9. Happy Thanksgiving! I am already cooking for our first vegetarian Thanksgiving. No cranberry sauce though, James won’t eat it.


    November 24, 2011 at 9:04 am

  10. Happy Thanksgiving, Ruth. I’m visiting Rochester this holiday season. Will be back here in January to do a lecture at RIT’ School of Photography and return to teach a course during the spring quarter.


    November 24, 2011 at 9:38 am

  11. Lara

    Happy Thanksgiving Ruth!!! My grandmother used to make a cranberry-orange jello. Now my aunt buys a cranberry sauce with little oranges in it. Enjoy your time with your family!!!


    November 24, 2011 at 10:39 am

  12. Gail Radley

    Ruthie I just made the same cranberry relish (no apple, I’ll try that next year) I am thankful that you are such an important part of my life. I love you


    November 24, 2011 at 10:44 am

  13. Don’t you just love tradition. 🙂


    November 24, 2011 at 10:52 am

  14. Oh I love how that’s prepared. We always do it on the stove. Have a great Thanksgiving.


    November 24, 2011 at 11:40 am

  15. connie

    Like this recipe and the memories I have of my parents old grinder. Since Grant works today we celebrated our Big Thanksgiving Meal Tuesday. I asked if he had a request for the meal & it was macaroni and cheese :-)) He had seconds of the mac and cheese instead of pie! That’s a real comfort food. Today we had a smaller meal with the leftover turkey and fresh veggies & soup. Time for a walk around the neighborhood- to earn a dessert later this evening. Happy Holidays to all the blog readers.


    November 24, 2011 at 2:17 pm

    • Mac and cheese, eh? Sounds good to me. Happy Thanksgiving to you. Missed you, Connie.


      November 26, 2011 at 12:22 am

  16. I love the starting and ending photographs; both the ‘before’ and ‘after’ are equally beautiful!


    November 24, 2011 at 5:18 pm

    • Thanks Stef. Hope you had a nice Thanksgiving.


      November 26, 2011 at 12:22 am

  17. Erica Wells

    My Mother, too, thanks for the visual and verbal reminder!!!


    November 25, 2011 at 8:42 am

Always good to hear from you.....

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