last minute christmas dinner side dish

remember when i made cranberry sauce a couple weeks ago?

well it was good, but it wasn’t quite right. it was a bit too tangy because i used an entire orange peal. and it was missing the delicious spice of ginger that i wanted.

so i tried it again and this time i’ve got a keeper!

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i made this to suit my tastes, so it’s not quite as tangy and not quite as sweet as other versions. i left out the orange and lemon peel and reduced the sugar by about half compared to my first try. i also added in minced candied ginger, which was a great decision if i do say so myself!

cranberry relish

by sarah zinkel

prep time: 5 minutes

“cook” time: 2 minutes

ready in: 24 hours


  • 1 bag cranberries (12 oz.), rinsed and bad berries removed
  • 1 orange, peeled
  • 1/4 lemon, peeled
  • 1/4 cup candied ginger, minced
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup sucanat


  1. add cranberries, orange, and lemon to food processor. pulse until you reach desired consistency. i like mine to be almost liquidy, but if you like yours to be chunkier, stop sooner.
  2. in a large bowl, mix together processed fruit, sugar, and sucanat.
  3. refrigerate for 24 hours before serving to allow flavors to blend.

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this batch is more like it.

not too sweet. not too tart. just right.

and in case you’re scrambling for a fruity side dish for your christmas dinner, can i recommend this?


i am back in manitowoc for the long weekend! i arrived yesterday with jake and capone and surprised liz, but brad had to work, so he is arriving this morning! tonight we’re celebrating thanksgiving at my mom’s house since liz had to stay in california last month. i might have to whip up a batch of this cranberry relish to contribute to the meal…

christmas festivities begin tomorrow with brad’s side of the family. it’s going to be a family-filled couple of days and i can’t wait!


how do you prefer your cranberries on thanksgiving, christmas, or anytime? in aluminum can form? relish? or sauce?

i really like relish, but (even though it kind of grosses me out…) i still like canned cranberries too.

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birthday cake bark

have you tried jessica’s cake batter bark?

i made some last year and loved it.

this year i knew i was going to make it again, especially since my love for birthday cake flavoring has only increased since making ashley’s cake batter cashew butter

and trying three olives birthday cake vodka.

birthday cake flavored anything is a winner in my book!

so, while i remember jessica’s cake batter bark being awesome, i remember thinking it wasn’t very cake-y and was pretty white chocolate-y instead.

so i bumped it up a notch.

i followed her recipe, but i added 1/2 tsp almond extract to 8 oz of dark chocolate on the bottom layer.


then, i added another 1/2 tsp almond extract and an extra two tbsp of funfetti cake mix to the 12 oz white chocolate for the top layer.


it’s still delicious. but it takes it up a notch. this bark really tastes like birthday cake!

it’s the almond extract that does it.

and trust me – it’s a good thing.

i might have to make an extra batch of this stuff. it’s a crowd pleaser!


is today anyone else’s friday?! i am so pumped for this weekend!! today is going to be busy finishing things up at work and packing to go home. i just hope i can concentrate on the things i need to do – i’m too excited!!!

and a very very happy birthday to the lovely katie! her birthday is exactly a month before mine and we had a joint birthday party back in middle school. it was one of the first boy-and-girl parties. my dad came in while we were sitting on the couch with a boy and he had his arm around my shoulders. my dad asked him, “so you like to hug?” and then he picked him up in a giant bear hug. i was embarrassed and one of my guy friends who was at the party still teases me about that to this day!


do you like birthday cake flavored things?

what’s your favorite kind of holiday bark?

i am partial to this birthday cake bark, but classic peppermint will always have a place in my heart too!

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