We cannot have Thanksgiving without a cranberry salad. This recipe, taken from Paula Deen Magazine steps it up a notch. You could even use if for dessert if you wanted. It is delicious. Such a gorgeous red color that is such a complimentary side to the turkey.
1 cup flour
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, melted
2 (8 oz) packages of cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 ( 8 oz) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
2 (3 oz) packages orange gelatin (this gives you that great orange-cranberry flavor combination)
2 cups boiling water
2 (14 oz) cans whole-berry cranberry sauce
1 cup cold water
Preheat oven to 350. Spray a 13×9″ baking pan with nonstick cooking spray
In a medium bowl, combine flour, pecans and brown sugar. Add melted butter, stirring to combine. Press mixture into bottom of prepared pan; bake for 12-15 min or until light golden brown. Let cool completely.
In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese and sugar at medium speed until smooth. Add Cool Whip and beat until blended well. Spread mixture over cooled crust; cover and chill for at least 4 hours. or refrigerate for up to 2 days (this would be great to make ahead so you have your salad already made and could concentrate on the turkey).
In a large bowl, stir together gelatin and 2 cups boiling water. Add cranberry sauce, stirring until combined. Stir in 2 cup cold water. Slowly pour gelatin mixture over chilled cream cheese layer. Cover and chill for at least 4 hours or up to 2 days. Cut into squares and serve. Garnish with whipped topping and a fresh cranberry and mint leaf.