The Four Seasons Cranberry Relish

Preparation info

  • Makes About

    1½ Quarts

    • Difficulty


Appears in

Get in There and Cook: A Master Class for the Starter Chef

Get in There and Cook

By Richard Sax

Published 1997

  • About

I couldn’t talk about turkey and stuffings without tossing in my favorite cranberry relish. This recipe is from New York’s spectacular restaurant The Four Seasons, where American ingredients have been used inventively for over thirty-five years. It was created by Four Seasons Chef Christian (Hitch) Albin.


  • 1 large navel orange
  • 1 lime
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 dried hot chili pepper
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • 2 cups sugar
  • ¼ cup plus cup cold water
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 2 pounds fresh or frozen and thawed cranberries, picked over


    1. Cut the orange and the lime, with their skins, into ¼-inch dice. Tie the ginger, cinnamon sticks, chili pepper, and vanilla bean in a little cheesecloth bag.
    2. Combine the sugar and the ¼ cup cold water in a nonreactive, wide, heavy skillet. Heat over medium heat, stirring with a wooden spoon to dissolve the sugar and brushing down any crystals from the sides of the pan with a brush dipped in hot water, until all of the sugar dissolves. Raise the heat and bring the syrup to a boil.
    3. Boil without stirring until the mixture caramelizes to a medium-dark amber color, about 5 minutes. Stir in the diced orange and lime and the bag of spices and cook over high heat, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes. Fold in the raisins and cranberries with a rubber spatula; gently stir in the ⅓ cup cold water to coat the raisins and cranberries with caramelized sugar. Cook over medium heat, stirring gently, until about half of the cranberries pop open, about 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and cool.
    4. Spoon the relish into sterilized jars (or use plastic containers after cooling the relish to lukewarm first). Cover tightly and refrigerate for 1 month before using. This relish keeps, refrigerated, for about 3 months.