Saturday, November 27, 2010

Giving thanks

Lately, it has been feeling as though we're enveloped in the a Tolkienian dark times of the world and I seemed to be forever asking for something. So when a few years ago, my close friend from Sweden decided to do a traditional Thanksgiving, I jumped at the opportunity. It was an opportunity for optimism. Neither she nor I are Americans, but this US holiday was just the thing we needed.
I remember before that meal, when we started giving thanks, I thought there was nothing going right in my life: I had gone through a major operation, a divorce, and was living far away from family, trying to cope with everything. But then, in a moment, my list of good happenings started growing. I had survived. I was in fair health. I had fantastic friends with me. Soon the list got longer and longer. The tradition stuck in my life. I have celebrated Thanksgiving ever since, and it has always given me a fresh perspective on life.

For this year's thanksgiving, I made a cran-goji berry sauce, which if I am to say so myself, turned out finger licking good! The goji berries give a wonderfully sweet fragrance to the sauce, complementing the tartness of the cranberries. The cumin adds a nice smokiness to the sauce.

Cran-goji berry sauce:

1/2 cup cranberries (dried)
1/2 cup goji berries (dried)
3/4 cup orange juice (preferrably with pulp)
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tspn cumin powder
2 to 2-1/2 tablespoons sugar (depending on how tart the cranberries are, and how sweet you want the sauce to be)
pinch of salt.

Soak the berries in a bowl of water until they plump back up. (I think you can use fresh cranberries but I decided to go with dried since I had dried goji berries on hand) Add the rest of the ingredients and boil until the berries are soft. The sauce thickens as it cools. And it's even better the next day!