Cranberries are the fruit of a low, trailing, evergreen vine. These slender vines flower in late summer and produce their distinctively tart, deep red berries in early fall.
Cranberries have a short season, but fortunately, they keep well, so it’s easy to stock up. You can store fresh cranberries in the refrigerator’s crisper drawer for up to four weeks, but you can also freeze them for up to a year. They can be frozen in their original packaging, or you can wash, dry, and pick through the berries first (discard any dark, mushy ones) and then transfer them to a heavy-duty freezer bag.
Use frozen cranberries like fresh cranberries in recipes. There’s no need to thaw the berries—just put them in a colander, rinse in cold water, pat dry with a towel, and use—but you may need to increase cooking time slightly.