These festive treats are sweetly tart and fun to eat. Use the freshest, bounciest cranberries you can find—not frozen.
1 cup fresh cranberries, washed, picked over
1 cup water
1 cup granulated sugar, plus 1/3 cup for coating
2 strips orange peel (no white pith)
Set the cranberries aside in a small glass bowl. In a medium saucepan, stir the water, 1 cup of sugar, and the orange peels together over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. Bring the syrup to a bare simmer and remove from heat. Let the syrup cool 2-3 minutes, and then pour it over the cranberries. Set a small bowl on top of the cranberries to submerge them. Cover the bowls and refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.
Strain the cranberries and set them on a plate. Remove the orange peels, cut into thin strips, and add to the berries. Sprinkle about 3 tablespoons of sugar over the berries, a little at a time, tossing well to coat. Let dry for 2 hours. Sprinkle another 1-2 tablespoons of sugar over them, rolling the berries until well coated. Let dry another hour before serving. Store uncovered at room temperature for 1-2 days.
Source: From Wintersweet by Tammy Donroe Inman (that's me!)