Because Thanksgiving is near and, to me, Thanksgiving wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without cranberry sauce, I’m posting this excerpt from my book Hooked on Antifreeze: True Tales About Loving and Leaving Alaska.
Recipe for Cranberry Sauce
Be my mom. Wait until first frost. Then, one weekend while out at Harding Lake, wander off to “check out the berries.” Under the power lines that surround the lake, find your usual patch of low-bush cranberries. Pick fast and clean. Notice how red, hard, and round the berries are, like smooth garnets, like natural rubies, like rosary beads. With each plunk, allow yourself to be carried further and further away from all that being a wife and mother means.
Back in town, freeze the berries. Then, one day when your husband returns from a grouse hunt, tell your eldest daughter to “Go downstairs and get some berries out of the freezer.” When she whines and says “Why do I have to do everything?” say, “Hurry now. Quick like a bunny. You’ll be done before you know it.”
Mix the berries with sugar and a little water in a pot. Bring to a boil until all the skins pop.