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I’m Tired of Canned ‘Cranberry Sauce.’ Can You Recommend a Recipe?

Jane SandersQ.I’m tired of canned “cranberry sauce” that still holds the shape of the can. Can you recommend a recipe? — @DavidOchoaA.Whether canned (with that odd gelatinous solidity) or made fresh (when it often turns into either a too-sweet goo or a bitter slurry), cranberry sauce can seem like more of a default nod to the ordeals of the Pilgrims than a genuine source of holiday pleasure.But an alternative needs that same garnet hue (a crucial contrast to the beigeness of the Thanksgiving plate) and something to provide a sophisticated, amped-up spin on the flavors that cranberry sauce is supposed to deliver.“Sweet and sour: that’s really what you’re looking for,” said Marcus Jernmark, the executive chef at Aquavit. “So it makes total sense to play with lingonberries.” Nordic cuisine is chic right now, and lingonberries are a Scandinavian staple (if you’ve had Swedish meatballs, you know how deftly these berries merge with gravy and mashed potatoes). Hence we asked Mr. Jernmark, a 29-year-old Swede, to concoct his version of Thanksgiving’s red sauce.What he came up with — a blend of lingonberry preserves, apples and shallots, shot through with aromatic layers of spice, almost like a mulled wine — is bracingly delicious and sort of a perfect solution: It’s traditional enough that the cranberry diehards in your family won’t complain, and yet so exuberantly earthy that the culinary progressives at your table will smile and ask about when you ate at Noma. RECIPE: Thanksgiving Lingonberry Relish The Dining staff is taking questions on cooking, drinking, entertaining, or any other holiday hurdles. Tweet us at @nytimesdining using the hashtag #ThanksgivingQs, or post a question, and browse other readers’ questions, here. Thanksgiving recipes, videos and more are here.

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