I've been noticing a trend with my palate lately. Fairly regularly, I sit down to write a blog post, and I automatically write something like "this type of dish/ingredient/method hasn't typically been something I've enjoyed, but now that I've made it myself, I pretty much adore it."
Applesauce is the most recent of these cases. I only thought to make it because I was making latkes, and was curious if a homemade version would be any better than store-bought, which is the only way I'd ever tried it. Turns out it is. Much, much better.
The cranberries added a key pop of color and tartness, and served with the best latkes ever, this was one of my favorite things I've made recently. Also, this one rates extremely high on the easiness scale, and it's an ideal side dish since it simmers away on the stove while you're prepping something more labor-intensive.
Adapted from Gourmet Magazine
4 pounds Golden Delicious apples (about 8), peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2 cups fresh or thawed frozen cranberries (6 ounces)
1/2 cup sugar
1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
1/2 cup water
Cook apples, cranberries, sugar, cinnamon stick, and water in a large heavy saucepan, covered, over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until fruit is very tender and broken down into a sauce, about 45 minutes. Discard cinnamon stick. Cool to room temperature or chill before serving.