For the Cranberry topping: Bring the sugar, salt, and cranberry juice to a boil. Stir in the dried cranberries, then the fresh or frozen berries. Simmer gently for 10 to 12 minutes, or until about half the berries have popped. Remove from the heat, and cool to room temperature. Yield: 4 cups.
You’ll need about 15 ounces (a scant 2 cups) sauce for the pie; enjoy the remainder on its own.
For the crust: Process the crackers, sugar, and melted butter in a food processor till crumbly and well combined. Press into the bottom and up the sides of a 9" pie pan. Bake in a preheated 375°F oven for about 7 to 8 minutes, until it’s set, but not brown. Remove from the oven and cool.
For the filling: Put the chips and cream in a microwave-safe container, and heat for about 90 seconds. Remove from the microwave, and stir till the mixture becomes smooth and dark brown. You’re simply making a basic ganache.
Assembly: Spoon the hot ganache into the cooled crust, and sprinkle the toasted nuts on top. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour, probably 2, till the ganache has firmed up. Once the ganache is set, top with the cranberry sauce.