This was a very poor year to grow just about anything in Fairbanks. It was also a really poor year for picking wild blueberries, but it was a steller year for cranberries. They are just dripping off the plants. We picked well over a gallon today and I got almost a gallon last week. They were really quite beautiful today. Most will get frozen and made into Cranberry Relish over the holidays. I couldn't resist getting a little cranberry liquor going that will be ready just in time for the holidays. Notice, I need to run out and get a little more vodka as mine did not fill my jar all the way!
6 cups cranberries
1 large bottle of vodka
Place clean, stem and leave free, dry cranberries in a 1/2 gallon canning jar. Put lid on jar and shake vigorously to break up cranberries and release their juice. Fill jar to top with vodka and place in a cool, dry place for about 3 months.
Line a mesh strainer with cheesecloth and strain mixture into a bowl. If you want the liquor to be clear, not cloudy do not press the cheesecloth.
Make a simple syrup by boiling 1 cup of water and adding two cups of sugar. Stir until melted and remove from head. Let cool and add to liquor. Return liquor to canning jars or individual bottles to package as gifts.