The Tart Fruit You Should Try Adding To Cranberry Sauce

Cranberries are fairly seasonal in the western world. They are usually harvested through the fall (September to November) and arrive in grocery stores just in time for the winter holidays when people make their own cranberry sauces, chutneys, and jellies. Cranberries are a relatively small fruit that is famous for their puckering, sour flavor. They also just so happen to be a bright red color, which looks very attractive on a plate next to green beans and stuffing. Britannica says that the cranberry is wild-grown throughout North America, Asia, and Northern and Western Europe but is most commonly found on the dinner plates of those in America and Canadian during Thanksgiving and Christmas.

In stores, you can usually find cranberries in their raw fresh form, dried, and candied as a jelly or whole berry. The most common kinds of dishes made out of cranberries are Cranberry Brie Bites, Best Cranberry Meatballs Recipe, cranberry cocktail, and the most classic, the most iconic cranberry recipe, the savory cranberry sauce

Cranberry sauce is usually flavored with seasonings like cinnamon, thyme, sage, or rosemary and the acidic bite of the fruit is often tempered by a bit of sugar. But, if you want a truly delicious secret ingredient in this year's cranberry sauce, you have to try adding tamarind to your dish.

The power of tart flavor

First of all, what is tamarind? Healthline describes the tropical fruit as a bean-like pod filled with seeds and a delicious jammy pulp that ripens into a mouthwatering sweet-sour flavor. The tamarind tree originated in Africa but successfully grows in the tropical climates of countries like India and Pakistan and is popular in Southeast Asian, Mexican, Middle Eastern, and Caribbean cuisine. According to Bon Appétit, tamarind is used medically and also as an agent of flavor with its sharp and sour notes. The word tamarind translates to "Indian date" and goes into dishes like thokku or chutney, mashed into a tart, or used to accompany curd rice. And with its uniquely tart taste, it also pairs quite well with cranberries.

Chef Priyanka Naik told Today that she adds tamarind to her cranberry sauce for some "tang" and Evil Mad Scientist recommends pairing your tamarind cranberry sauce (or chutney) with traditional flavors like fennel, cumin, ginger, cayenne, and garam masala. Meanwhile, in their recipe for cranberry sauce, Healthy-Indian recommends adding 1 tablespoon of tamarind, either soaked or juiced (or in paste form), for a "spicy, tangy, [and] sweet" rendition.