Fall Fun Series: Craving Cranberry

20171108_123040Possible name change in order, from FALL Fun to WINTER Fun Series, at least here in the Midwest where record breaking cold temps moved in this weekend. Winter’s frosty grip reached out a hand as flakes flew on Friday and our early Saturday morning Speech tournament commute started out at a balmy 13 degrees! Though I was startled to see such abruptly bare trees and drifts of strewn leaves outside, I look forward to the upcoming festivity of the Christmas season. Side note, any friends interested in a Winter Fun series next year?ūüėȬ†

Chilly days, bare trees and busy weekends in November must mean the holidays are approaching. With them, an about-face from fall staple scents of pumpkin and apple, to the cozier comforts of peppermint and cranberry.¬†20171112_120328I don’t think I’ve ever actually craved cranberry. I like the fruit, as far as berries go it’s ranked above the summer berries. However, in wax, it usually takes the same syrupy sweet turn that’s failed to impress. There have been a few exceptions, the cranberry and oak of Scentsational’s Crimson is my favorite Walmart wax, reviewed last year, I don’t think it was re-released this Fall as it’s not on the website. Bath and Body Works’ Cranberry Woods is another stand-out. I’ve learned I need a well-blended formula that isn’t berry-heavy to enjoy a cran scent. I took a chance with an early September pre-order for¬†Bento Wax’s Cranberry Zucchini Bread.20171108_123309Bento Wax– These instantly recognizable sushi roll wax shapes are unique in the world of vendor wax. They’re also fun to watch melt as the “wax sandwich” layers liquefy into pretty pools. A 3-pack cost $4.50.

Cranberry Zucchini Bread: Unopposed¬†to the bread/baguette fragrances, I find they are usually true-to-life, and this gal loves to eat some true-life bread. CZB has that unmistakable¬†freshly baked zucchini bread aroma. Cozy and warming with hints of toasted almond, crunchy grated zucchini and¬†a spicy barrage of cinnamon, sugar and nutmeg.¬†The cranberry is tart and acidic with a distinct cherry note to it, which doesn’t agree with me. However, my husband loved it and commented all day on how good the house smelled.¬†Potent, room-filling fragrance from half a sushi roll, I’d cut this one into quarters in the future.20171111_164608I had another cranberry wax blend planned, but my Sniff My Tarts Fall custom order was lost somehow and I’m still waiting for the wax to arrive. Cranberry scents may not fill my stocking this year, but there are numerous other ways I enjoy the deep red natural wonder:

Potpurri-Specifically this simmering¬†Williams-Sonoma Christmas potpourri recipe which I’ve used in my own house and my parents’ during the holidays. If you keep an eye on the water level, 8+hours of all natural festive fragrance could be yours, no wax burner required.

The side dish- I’m a fan of cranberry sauce, whether, whole, canned or relished. One of our favorite easy weeknight dinners during this crazy time of year are Turkey Cranberry Swiss grilled cheese sandwiches. Who says you have to wait till Thanksgiving?

The beverages- I shared this Cranberry Apple Cider recipe during last year’s Fall Fun Series I. It was such a hit at a friend’s party, I must make more soon. The lazy version is the Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash, which after a refreshing 10 year run, seems to have been discontinued:(20161111_183831The cocktails- Half-Baked Harvest creates some incredible dishes and recently got into the foodie cocktail game. Especially intrigued by this Deathly Hallows Cocktail, I only need one more ingredient and an obligation free weekend to test this inspired recipe. You bet I’ll update if I do.

The dried berries- I could snack on dried cranberries constantly. They make an appearance in salads, yogurt and granola on the regular. Mmmm.

The vase filler- bursting with natural texture and color, cranberries make a stunning jar filler for candles or flowers.

How do you crave your cranberry? Or is there another Fall-Winter transition fragrance that you gravitate to this time of year? My craving for Marshmallow Fireside has kicked into high gear along with the chill, think I’ll met that today.

6 thoughts on “Fall Fun Series: Craving Cranberry

  1. Bahahahaha! Yup, there’s that sympatico thing again, in both post title and sentiment! But seriously, it’s too friggin’ cold and frosty to even consider this still Fall. Winter came, and we’re totally in the thick of it now. ūüė¶ And I would indeed be down for a Winter series next year – I think we might have exhausted the Fall. Only so many things you can say about pumpkins.

    Your pictures look fantastic, Jay – did you get a new camera or are you using a new setup? So nice and clear, and really nicely composed. Lovely. I particularly like the flaming ring of cranberries.

    And Bento wax! How awesome, it’s completely adorable. That cranberry zucchini guy sounds quite scrumptious, but I know what you mean about that acidic note. And it’s really quite tolerable, particularly when paired with a nice bakery to really temper things, but as it melts and the day goes on, I always find that cranberry scents start to…I don’t know…disassemble somehow? Like all you can smell is that astringent note, while the sweet and fruity just up and disappear.

    Oh my, that Deathly Hallows cocktail sounds fantastic. I love deeply layered cocktails, particularly when they get into mashes and muddled things and the addition of weird herbs. I’d drink – let’s face it, probably more than two – these with you FUR SURE.


    1. We are muy sympatico.
      New camera? Sadly no. I will have had this particular camera phone 3 years in March when I plan to retire it for another, hopefully less tiresome version. I use Samsung/Android, so at least I can change the battery, but my camera phone is a real bee-yotch most days. The cranberry ring photo (thank you:))) has the benefit of being taken outside on a decent sunny day (before the cold snap!) You can see the difference in light quality compared with the melting sushi photo, taken in the cavern-like darkness of my light-sucking house. It could not be worse for photo capturing.
      Someday, a used handheld legit camera will be purchased, but not anytime soon.

      I had every intention of concocting that DH cocktail for this post, but ran out of time. I will totally toast to you when I get the chance to make it, not sure if I’ll light the thyme on fire though…


      1. Ah, natural light – nothing like it. I have a really terrible home base out of which to take photos as well. Basically if I’m not out on my livingroom balcony (which really sucks when it’s -20 and snowing) everything comes out dark, muddled and with that odd, yellow-ish tinge that indoor light has. I have no “real” setup either, though – all iPhone for me. Like you, one day I’ll look into the camera thing, but I think I’m doing all right now. ūüôā


  2. Love all your cranberry filled goodness! I am horribly picky about my cranberries in wax too. I like them a little sweet, a little tart, woodsy if I can get it and spiced. Thanks for all the cool cranberry recipes. Hoping your winter won’t be too terribly harsh.


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