Last Updated on October 24, 2020
This is fast becoming a staple Thanksgiving dessert. I don’t like pumpkin pie, and mince-pie is wonderful for Christmas, so this has the one for this holiday. It’s very simple to make with only a few ingredients that you probably already have on hand.
You will want to use Panko breadcrumbs because they are large and very dry. Broken up bread will not absorb enough of the juices to make a nice top on this. Breadcrumbs that come in a can will not work either, as they are too small, and you would just have a cranberry pudding instead of a Brown Betty.
This dessert is best made in a cast iron skillet. If you don’t have one, I highly recommend getting one. “But, they’re not non-stick! But, they’re heavy! But, you can’t wash them!” All those excuses! A well-seasoned cast iron skillet is very much non-stick. Lodge makes them pre-seasoned and ready to go. Yup, they are heavy, but that means that they retain heat very, very well and can go from the stove top to the oven without any worries. Wash them? I wash mine with soap and water every time I use it, I just let it sit on the stove top with a flame under until the water has evaporated and I rub it with a little oil.
Make this for your Holiday table and enjoy the smiles from guests. Enjoy!
- Before going into the oven
- Rinse the berries in water and remove any that have gone bad.
- Put the berries in a non-reactive pot with the water and the cup of sugar. Bring to a boil, then add the ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Let boil until the cranberries have burst and are starting to make a sauce. Remove from the heat.
- Butter an iron skillet and put the cranberries in. Mix the applesauce into the cranberries.
- Put the breadcrumbs in a separate bowl and add the remaining brown sugar and add half of the butter. Mix pretty well, and add half of this mixture to the cranberries, and stir to combine.
- Some Panko breadcrumbs are drier than others. If yours are really, really dry you will need almost all the butter, if not, use less butter. Slowly add the butter to the remaining breadcrumbs, reserving about a tablespoon of butter. Put this mixture on top of the cranberry mixture, spreading it out evenly. Pour the remaining butter on top.
- Heat in a 350 oven for about 40 minutes.
You must use Panko breadcrumbs, regular breadcrumbs are too small, and breadcrumbs made at home will not be dry enough. You can get Panko breadcrumbs at your local supermarket, or your local Asian market.
Serve with creme fraiche or ice cream.