Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Five Things You Didn't Know About Cranberries

I love cranberries. We go through tons of cranberry juice here at the Basilica. You already know the containers are our preferred packaging for homemade laundry detergent. We also eat lots of dried cranberries and put them in everything--granola, pies, cobblers, salads. You name it. In honor of Thanksgiving here are five things you maybe didn't know about those bitter little red fruits.

  1. The Pilgrims called them craneberrys because the blossoms resembled the head of a sandhill crane.

  2. Cranberries are one of only three fruits completely native to North America. The other two are blueberries and Concord grapes.

  3. In 2002 the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture declared October to be National Cranberry Month.

  4. During World War II, American troops required about one million pounds of dehydrated cranberries a year.

  5. Seven of 10 cranberries sold in the world today come from Ocean Spray, a grower cooperative started in 1930.

Now you know all you need to know for Trivial Pursuit, crossword puzzles and to impress your friends.

On a more important note, here is the absolute best way to use cranberries--in cranhattans!


Muddle a tsp. of sugar, a couple of drops of bitters and the juice from approx. 1/4 of a lemon or lime in the bottom of a glass. Add a jigger or so of bourbon, or more. Stir, add ice to glass and fill 2/3 with ginger ale (Canada Dry Green Tea Ginger Ale is perfect but Big K works just as well). Top the last 1/3 with cranberry juice and drop in couple of cranberries for effect. Perfection!

At the Basilica we recommend these before and after Thanksgiving dinner and the next day and so on.


Treehouse Chef said...

I have taste the Basilica's Cranhattan and it is marvelous!!!!

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