Jellied Cranberry Sauce
1 Bag Fresh/Frozen Cranberries (14 oz to 1 lb)
1/2 cup Water
1 Lemon, Zest (optional)
1 cup sugar or a cup agave nectar (or more to taste)
Add cranberries, water, and lemon zest to a pot. Cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes, covered so a small amount of steam can escape. You'll start to hear the berries popping as the skins split. Check on them after about 10 minutes. If they're softened and mush easily, place them in your food mill or strainer over a bowl. (You can skip this part if you want a chunkier sauce.)
Don't forget to scrape the bottom of the mill/strainer. Your cranberry mixture should be smooth, but it's okay if it has some seeds in it. Mine did, but you can't taste them and they just remind you that the sauce is homemade! A finer strainer will get the seeds, too.
Return the sauce to the stove and add the sugar. I like 1 cup of sugar, or a cup of agave nectar, but I think even that doesn't make it quite as sweet as the canned stuff. I think 1 1/2 cups of sugar would achieve that, but I leave it at 1 cup.
Stir until the sugar is dissolved and let it simmer for 1-2 minutes.
Now you just need to chill the sauce in a lightly oiled mold of some sort. I used a cupcake tin, as I thought it'd be cute to have individual rounds of jellied sauce.
Now chill it for a few hours. It'll keep for 2-3 days, so you can make it in advance of a big meal but you can also make it during the day and it'll be ready for dinner.