1 bag of fresh cranberries, washed and drained
1 medium apple, peeled and chopped**
1 medium pear, peeled and chopped**
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp lemon extract (or a squeeze of fresh lemon juice)
1 tbsp brown sugar
1/2-3/4 cup white sugar or splenda (to taste)
3/4 cup water
Combine all ingredients in a medium to large sauce pan. Start with the 1/2 cup sugar, and if you need more after it's done, stir it in. Simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until all ingredients are soft and cooked down into a sauce.
Here comes my note:
**When you're chopping your apple and pear, think ahead. If you want a "rustic" style cranberry sauce (chunky), chop them into smaller pieces. I'd say probably 1/4-1/2" dice. For my sauce, I used an immersion blender once everything was done cooking, so I made a bigger dice (about 1").
Another note: When selecting your apples, use a red one! The sweet will offset the tart of the cranberry and reduce the amount of sugar you'll need. Also, try to buy a good looking local breed! I used a Pacific Rose apple. Same goes for pears. Try to buy a sweeter variety, and buy local! It will be fresher, better tasting, and better for your local economy!
This is what mine looked like when everything was cooked down, just before I took my immersion blender to it:
And just after:
I purposely left some chunks in mine, so that it wouldn't be like a cranberry butter. I wanted a bit of substance to it still. In the future, I think that I'll just dice the apples and pears a bit smaller and leave it as is. I like the chunks!