Currant classics: cranberry + cassis

Cranberry is a holiday classic, enhanced by items like currant and cassis.
Here’s a few recipes melding all of these savory treats.
The Menu Shoppe gets it covered…and uncovers more great finds.
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons crème de cassis (black-currant-flavored liqueur)
  • 1 12-ounce bag fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 tablespoon ketchup
Bring 1 cup water, 1/2 cup sugar, and 1/4 cup crème de cassis to boil in heavy medium saucepan over high heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Add fresh cranberries; return to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer until cranberries pop and sauce thickens, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in dried cranberries, ketchup, and 2 tablespoons crème de cassis. a bit of ketchup helps the sweet and tart flavors blend.
Warm or chilled.  Perhaps a dollop on your stuffing for extra panache.

Apple Cranberry Currant Crumble Pie

  • 1/4 cup creme de cassis
  • 1/4 cup dried currants
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh or thawed frozen cranberries, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 6 Tbsp plus 1 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp finely grated orange zest
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 6 cups sliced peeled Granny Smith apples (about 2 1/4 pounds)
  • 10-inch pie pastry for a single crust pie
  • 2/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into chunks
Combine the cassis and the currants in a small bowl.  Plump the currants at least an hour.
Preheat oven to 375°F. In a large bowl mix 1 cup white sugar with 6 Tbsp flour, orange zest, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Use a slotted spoon to transfer currants from cassis (reserved to the sugar mixture ). Add cranberries and apples and mix well. Pour filling into unbaked pie pastry and drizzle with the reserved liqueur.
In another bowl mix 1 cup flour with 2/3 cup of brown sugar. Add the butter and cut in with a pastry blender or rub with your fingers until the mixture forms small lumps. Sprinkle topping over the filling. Set pie in a foil-lined 10×15 inch baking pan.
Bake on bottom rack until juices bubble, 55 to 65 minutes. If pie browns too quickly, cover loosely with foil.
Set pie on rack, uncovered, to cool for 2 to 3 hours.
Makes 10-12 servings.
the original recipe
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup cranberries, picked over
  • 1/3 cup cassis
  • 4 1/2 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, chopped
In a saucepan combine the cream, the sugar, the cranberries, and the cassis and simmer the mixture, stirring occasionally, for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the berries have burst. Remove the pan from the heat, stir in the chocolates, stirring until the mixture is smooth, and strain the mixture through a sieve into a bowl. Serve warm. Exquisite topping…for pastries or holiday puddings. 
The original recipe:
…and top it off with a classic kir.
  • 1 1/2 cups chilled cranberry juice
  • 3/4 cup crème de cassis (black currant-flavored liqueur)
  • 1 750-ml bottle chilled dry champagne or sparkling wine
Place 2 tablespoons cranberry juice and 1 tablespoon crème de cassis in each of 12 champagne flutes. Pour 1/4 cup champers and dazzle.
If it’s on the menu…the Menu Shoppe has it covered.

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