Cranberries!The Ocean Spray commercials have been seen by people all across America, however many Americans have no idea why they feature two men standing in a lake filled with cranberries. That's why we headed to a man-made bog that was set up in New York City's Rockefeller Center to speak with a cranberry grower who could explain this strange phenomenon.
We learned that cranberries actually grow on vines close to the ground in a dry area. When they are ripe, the growers flood the bog, or the land where the cranberries are growing, until the water covers the berries. Then they take a machine through the fields that gently knocks the berries off of the vine, allowing the cranberries to float to the surface. Then they corral the berries into one area where they are pulled out of the water, sorted, and sent out.
Caramel and Almond Bark Covered Cranberries
When we asked cranberry grower, Heidi Slinkman, her favorite way to eat cranberries, she told us about this delicious and simple recipe:
2 cups fresh, ripe cranberries
1 bag of soft caramel candy (14 oz)
2 tablespoons water
1 box toothpicks
1 bag of almond bark (or chocolate almond bark)
2 cups chopped nuts or toffee
1. Line a baking sheet with wax paper and set aside.
2. Unwrap the caramel candies and place them in a microwave safe bowl. Add water. Microwave for one minute, stir, and microwave for another minute or until the caramel is completely melted and smooth.
3. One by one, stick a toothpick in a cranberry, dip it in the caramel until it is fully covered, and place on the wax paper. Repeat until the baking sheet is full.
4. Put the caramel covered cranberries in the fridge for 20 - 30 minutes.
5. Break up the almond bark into small pieces and place in a microwave-safe bowl. Melt the almond bark in the microwave, stirring every 30 seconds.
6. Dip the caramel-covered cranberries in the melted almond bark and then dip in chopped nuts or toffee while it is still wet. Place back on the wax paper and repeat with the rest of the cranberries.
7. Chill in the refrigerator for 30 minutes and then enjoy!