When it comes to cranberries there are many ways to jazz them up. This recipe allows for a bit of an exotic twist. Chutneys, hailing originally from India, are a happy marriage between sweet and sour. Just in time for the holidays, here is a unique take on the classic Thanksgiving side dish that may just become the star of the meal.
1 cup fresh Cranberries
1/2 cup Dried Figs, diced
2/3 cup Yellow Onion, small diced
1 clove Garlic, minced
1/3 cup packed Brown Sugar
1/2 tablespoon Orange Zest
1/3 cup fresh Orange Juice (about 1 orange)
1/2 cup Cider Vinegar
1/2 teaspoon grated Ginger Root
1 tablespoon Olive Oil
1/2 stick of Cinnamon
1/2 Star Anise
1 teaspoon Mustard Seeds
1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg, freshly grated
1/4 teaspoon Salt
Prepare the dried figs (about 5 or 6) by pouring about a half a cup of boiling water over them and letting them sit for 15 minutes. Drain the water from the figs and cut them into pieces about the same size as a cranberry.
Heat the olive oil in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Add the onion and sweat until translucent. Add in the garlic, stirring for about a minute. Add in the figs and stir well. Pour in the orange juice and add the rest of the ingredients. Stir well to combine. Reduce the heat to medium-low and allow the cranberries to cook and the liquid to reduce, about 15 to 20 minutes. Ultimately the chutney should be the same consistency as jam. *When the chutney is finished cooking remove the cinnamon stick, star anise and cloves.
*If you don’t feel like playing hide and seek with the cinnamon, cloves, and star anise you can wrap them up in cheesecloth and tie the bundle with kitchen twine. In the end all you need to do is pull the bundle out. The reason I don’t do it that way is because you will lose some liquid in the cheesecloth packet, but it is easier.
Tips and Tricks
Like most sauces chutney is better after the flavors have married a few hours. If you’re making this the day of, make it early on. It’s even better if you can make it the day before.
Chutney is able to be served warm or cold, it purely a matter of preference.
This recipe serves 4 people as an accompaniment or 2 people as a side.