I love using cranberries in ways other than as a condiment for turkey. In this recipe cranberries combine with parsnips for a tangy, earthy, sweet side dish that is great side. It’s also somewhat festive for Christmas, if you garnish with parsley–you”ll have that red and green motif. You want to slice the parsnips quite thinly, perhaps even shred them so they’ll cook quickly, otherwise the cranberries will dissolve into sauce and turn everything dark pink, which is not a bad thing, you”ll just lose some texture. If you don’t have cranberries or are already using them in another holiday dish, sub some red cherries (thawed if frozen).

2 T vegetable oil
3/4 c chopped onion or leek
2 – 3 cloves minced garlic
1 1/2 c fresh cranberries
salt, to taste
3 c thinly sliced, finely chopped, or shredded, peeled parsnips
3/4 c apple juice or apple cider, divided
2 T arrowroot, cornstarch, or kuzu powder
fresh chopped parsley, for garnish, optional

1. Heat oil in a skillet. Sauté onion until just tender (leek will cook quicker than onion). Add garlic and cook another minute. Add cranberries along with some salt and cook, stirring often, until the cranberries are on the verge of splitting open.

2. Add parsnips along with 1/2 c of the juice. Stir to combine skillet ingredients and cook for about 5 minutes, until parsnips are just tender.

3. Meanwhile combine remaining 1/4 c of juice with the arrowroot. When the parsnips are just tender stir this in and cook a few minutes longer until the mixture has thickened. Garnish with parsley and serve.