Is Anyone Familiar With Using Wild Cranberries?
Earlier this fall, while in Maine, I picked quite a few wild cranberries, and brought them home and froze them. While smaller, they have a wonderful flavor. I made some scones with them, and they were quite bitter; apparently, I should have sweetened them first, but am not sure how to do that without cooking them. They do make wonderful cranberry sauce; their flavor is much more complex than the cultivated ones. Can anyone give me some good ideas on how to use them?
There are both low bush cranberries and lingonberries. in the same family, but different. They are usually made into a preserve or a sauce, cooking with sugar to sweeten them up. To use in a bread or muffin you can cook them up with sugar, no water or just a tiny bit, until they are sweet, then drain and save the syrup and add the berries to the muffin batter.
In Sweden they also serve meatballs in lingonberry sauce, and the sauce is used with many other foods. In what they consider the best preserve they mix the whole berries (or partially crushed berries) with sugar and let sit overnight, and it makes an uncooked preserve. So you could try that. The berries don't need to be chopped and are used whole.
Lingonberries are considered in the class of superffruits because of their anti-oxidants.
I've been doing some research; these are commonly called "lowbush cranberries" by the oldtimers in Maine. That being the case, I believe they may actually be lingonberries. @babettefeasts, thank you for the tip. I was trying to avoid chopping them, and I'm not sure sugaring them whole would penetrate the berries.