Cranberries: Delicious raw or cooked

Island Epicure

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Down on the coast, this year’s cranberries have been raked, sorted and packaged for our pleasure and good nourishment. We’ve enjoyed them in baked goods this month, especially these scones, made with low-gluten barley flour or no-gluten sorghum flour combined with almond meal for texture and flavor. Almond meal supplies magnesium and calcium, plus protein and is lower in carbohydrates than grain flours. Besides, it’s so-o-o-good. Anti-inflammatory, too.

Gluten Free
Cranberry Scones
Makes 14 to 16
Stir in a mixing bowl:
1 cup sorghum flour
1 ¼ cups almond meal
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon sea salt or unrefined salt
¼ cup brown cane sugar or coconut sugar
1 cup fresh, washed cranberries
½ cup chopped walnuts or pecans
In a 2-cup measure, fork beat:
½ cup almond milk or orange juice
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 egg

Stir the liquid mixture into the dry mixture just until well-combined. Depending on the dryness of your flour, you may need to add another tablespoon or two of milk. While letting the scone dough rest 10 or 15 minutes so the flour and meal can soak up moisture, preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Drop the dough by tablespoonfuls onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, until tops are slightly golden. Give the tallest scone the toothpick test. If, the toothpick comes out clean, the scones are done. With tongs, transfer them to a wire rack. Present in a napkin-lines basket until cool enough to handle. Offer butter and jam to put on them.

Scone batter makes a good apple cobbler topping.  Yet another use for cranberries is in cran-apple chutney. Sweet and spicy, it’s a tasty relish to go with Thanksgiving turkey.

Cranberry Chutney
Makes about 2 ½ cups
1 cup water
1 small yellow onion, chopped
2 Tablespoons butter or ghee
2 cups cranberries
2 tart apples, Granny Smith or Fuji
1 hot pepper, seeded and minced (wear rubber gloves) or ½ teaspoon red Tabasco sauce
½ teaspoon ground cloves
3/8 to ½ cup brown sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons minced fresh ginger root

In a saucepan or skillet that has a cover heat, but don’t brown, the butter. Add the onion and cook 5 minutes on medium low, adding water as needed to prevent the pan going dry. When the onion becomes transparent, add the remaining ingredients. Bring to a low boil, reduce heat and simmer until the cranberries pop. Stir-cook to reduce liquid if necessary. Cool slightly.  Transfer to a jar that holds at least three cups. Cover. Refrigerate. You can make this several days before Thanksgiving. The cloves both flavor and preserve the chutney.