Growing up, I can remember seeing someone slide a strange red cranberry colored gel from a can on to a plate around Thanksgiving. I never touched it. I am not really sure how they make that, but I am very sure I will never try it.
Fresh cranberries are all over grocery stores right now. I love dried cranberries. The problem with them is that they are not dried cranberries. They are cranberries, sugar, corn syrup, and preservatives. So I bought a bag of them! Fresh! I really had no idea what to expect with this. Did you know the inside of a cranberry is white? Impress someone with that at the dinner table tomorrow.
These oven-dried cranberries have just a touch of agave nectar to balance out the tartness of the fruit. Simple, tart, and tasty!
1-2 t agave nectar (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Rinse the cranberries. Bring a medium sized pot of water to a boil.
Add the cranberries to the boiling water, and allow them to boil until they pop. This takes about 1-2 minutes.
With a slotted spoon, take the cranberries out and put them somewhere you can mash them to bits. I just used a large skillet on the stove. This is also when you can agave nectar if you choose.
Line a cookie sheet with two layers of paper towels and one sheet of parchment paper. After you have smashed those babies to bits, smear them out on the parchment paper.
Place cookie sheet in the oven preheated to 350 degrees and turn the oven temperature down to the lowest setting. The lowest mine would go was 170 degrees. Bake for 2-3 hours or until all the moisture is evaporated. I turned the oven off, and I left the pan in the oven over night to get the dried result.
They are quite tart and definitely not as sweet as the sugary store bought kind. Throw them on a salad with a few blueberries and cherry tomatoes; the sweetness of these off sets how tart the cranberries are. Yum.