This is no ordinary cranberry punch recipe.
It's Hot Buttered Cranberry Punch, a thick, rich, unforgettable punch worthy of special occasions and quiet evenings by the fire. Alcohol optional, and great either way.
5 cups unsweetened pineapple juice
5 cups cranberry juice
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 cans cranberry sauce (about 2 cups)
1 1/2 cups water
1 teaspoon whole cloves
2 cinnamon sticks
1/2 cup butter, or pats of butter
2 cups vodka, optional
In a large saucepan or stock pot, combine the juices, brown sugar, cranberry sauce and water. Tie the whole cloves and cinnamon sticks in cheesecloth, making a spice bag, and add it to the pot. Bring to a low boil, reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour or longer. Remove the spice bag.
Just before serving, stir in the vodka, if desired, and the butter. The butter will float on top and may need to be replenished from time to time, or float a small pat of butter in each cup.
Serve in mugs or heat-resistant punch cups. Makes 28 to 32 (4-oz.) servings. But we usually serve it in mugs, rather than punch cups, with about 6 ounces of punch, making fewer but more generous servings. Don't worry, it's very rich and goes far.
(for a large crock pot or 1/2 recipe):
Combine all ingredients except butter and vodka in the crockpot. Cover and cook on low for 4 to 10 hours. Proceed with the second part of the directions, above.