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STEVE INSKEEP, host:

It's been two-plus weeks since Election Day. The swearing-in is still to come, and most of the swearing-at is over. President-elect Barack Obama, John McCain and their former running mates are likely looking forward to a hearty Thanksgiving, as is NPR's special correspondent Susan Stamberg, but her holiday plans are haunted by the ghost of politics past.

SUSAN STAMBERG: Maybe like me, you will be doing your holiday marketing this weekend. There are always raw cranberries on the top of my shopping lists, because it is time to make Mama Stamberg's cranberry relish.

(Soundbite of 2008 Vice Presidential Debate, October 2, 2008)

Governor SARAH PALIN (Governor, Alaska): Say it ain't so, Joe.

STAMBERG: My name is Susan.

(Soundbite of 2008 Vice Presidential Debate, October 2, 2008)

Gov. PALIN: There you go again, pointing backwards again.

STAMBERG: But Governor Palin, it's an NPR tradition.

(Soundbite of 2008 Vice Presidential Debate, October 2, 2008)

Gov. PALIN: Doggone it.

STAMBERG: The annual recitation of my late mother-in-law Marjorie Stamberg's recipe for cranberry relish, the recipe that sounds terrible and tastes terrific.

(Soundbite of 2008 Presidential Debate, September 26, 2008)

Senator JOHN MCCAIN (Republican, Arizona): This is dangerous. It isn't just naive; it's dangerous.

STAMBERG: Actually it's quite benign and simple. You ready for the list of ingredients? The recipe calls for two cups of raw cranberries, and then just a few more things.

(Soundbite of 2008 Presidential Debate, September 26, 2008)

President-elect BARACK OBAMA (Democratic Senator, Illinois): This orgy of spending.

STAMBERG: Not a bit; it's a very short list. In addition to the cranberries, you buy one small onion, and be careful about the onion's skin. You do not want to put it in the disposal or it could get clogged. And then you know what you'd need...

(Soundbite of 2008 Presidential Debate, October 15, 2008)

Sen. MCCAIN: Joe the Plumber.

STAMBERG: And once the plumber comes to the house.

(Soundbite of 2008 Presidential Debate, September 26, 2008)

President-elect OBAMA: Orgy of spending.

STAMBERG: Right on. But I digress. So, the raw cranberries, the small onion, plus a half a cup of sugar. And now the recipe starts to sound weird. Three-quarters of a cup of sour cream. Finally, for the grand finale, the last ingredient: two tablespoons of horseradish.

(Soundbite of 2008 Vice Presidential Debate, October 2, 2008)

Gov. PALIN: It's a toxic mess.

STAMBERG: Now, here's what you do. You ready?

(Soundbite of 2008 Vice Presidential Debate, October 2, 2008)

Vice President-elect JOSEPH BIDEN (Democratic Senator, Delaware): Sit down. Talk, talk, talk, talk.

STAMBERG: Time now for action.

(Soundbite of 2008 Vice Presidential Debate, October 2, 2008)

Gov. PALIN: Darn right, we need...

STAMBERG: You wash up the raw cranberries.

(Soundbite of 2008 Presidential Debate, October 15, 2008)

Sen. MCCAIN: I don't care about no washed-up terrorist.

STAMBERG: Not terrorists, cranberries. You grind the washed cranberries up with the onion, and then you add all the other ingredients, the sour cream the sugar and the horseradish.

(Soundbite of 2008 Presidential Debate, September 26, 2008)

President-elect OBAMA: Orgy of spending.

STAMBERG: More and orgy of mixing. You mix everything up and you put the mixture in a plastic container and freeze it. Early on Thanksgiving morning, you move it down to the regular part of the refrigerator to let it thaw, like the polar ice cap.

(Soundbite of 2008 Vice Presidential Debate, October 2, 2008)

Vice President-elect BIDEN: I think it's clearly manmade.

STAMBERG: By meal time, you will be all set. The relish is chunky, creamy, tart, tangy and a Pepto-Bismol color. Everybody will love it, I promise, although, sure, there are always a few detractors in the crowd.

(Soundbite of 2008 Presidential Debate, October 15, 2008)

President-elect OBAMA: I don't mind being attacked for the next three weeks.

STAMBERG: Me either. I have developed a very thick skin about this recipe over the years. So, wishing everybody a happy Thanksgiving, I'm Susan Stamberg.

(Soundbite of 2008 Presidential Debate, September 26, 2008)

Sen. MCCAIN: Miss Congeniality.

STAMBERG: NPR News.

(Soundbite of campaign speech, October 19, 2008)

Gov. PALIN: You betcha(ph). Drill, baby, drill, and mine, baby, mine.

(Soundbite of music)

(Soundbite of laughter)

INSKEEP: The full recipe for Mama Stamberg's cranberry relish, without the debate clips, sadly, is at npr.org.

(Soundbite of music)

INSKEEP: This is NPR News.

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