I remember the first time having cranberry sauce when I was about 5. Back then, the DrDrama parental units were poor grad students trying to make an American holiday feast on a salary of about $3/hour for a family of five. I remember the quivering slurp of a cylinder shaped mold of bright red cranberry jelly (the kind that you could slice and probably contained boiled horses' hooves or something). All I remember of it was that it gave me horrible diarrhea and ruined my kindergarten brain on cranberry sauce for a long time.
I have revisited cranberry sauce in recent years and have a foolproof recipe that I doctored up from the recipe on the back of the cranberry package.
12 oz of fresh cranberries
3/4 cup sugar
1 cup orange juice
zest of 4 medium lemons
spices to taste (I like cinnamon, nutmeg and grated ginger for a little heat)
Mix in a medium saucepan and heat to boiling for 5 minutes, mixing well. Take off heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Can be served chilled or at room temperature.
It makes your house smell like fall. It also would make a great topping for pancakes or would mix well with a little softened butter to spread on toast.