I’ve never been a cranberry sauce fan—and when you hail from near Cape Cod, this is practically a treasonous act. In fact, I think so little of it on Thanksgiving that I usually make no more than 1 1/2 cups of anything cranberry for our up-to-12 guests. Alas, The One is a cranberry freak. (Why is it that opposites attract in the most inconvenient places?) He pleaded with me to make this cranberry chutney, and make a lot of it. As I was deep sighing my way through the recipe, making sure to toss terribly martyred looks his way, something wonderful happened. I took a taste and liked it. Actually, not just liked it. Loved it. It’s the sweetness from the sugar and honey, the tartness from the cranberries and vinegar, and the heat from the mustard that makes it special. Diana Henry, the author of the recipe, says that it’s great with turkey sandwiches (not to mention ham and roast beef, too). All I have to say is this cranberry chutney—a double batch of it, to be precise—is making an appearance on our Thanksgiving table this year.–David Leite
LC All We Want for Christmas Is... Note
We know, we know. It’s not even Thanksgiving yet. Still, we can’t help looking ahead and thinking that all we want for Christmas, after tasting this sweetly tart condiment, is jar after jar of it. That and ample leftover turkey and ham. As author Diana Henry notes, “Its selling point is that it’s both hot and sweet. It’s perfect at Christmas, when you’re making all those turkey and ham sandwiches and want cranberries with a kick.” And, she adds, “Don’t rule it out with cold rare roast beef, too.”
Cranberry Chutney Recipe
- Quick Glance
- 10 M
- 35 M
- Makes about 1 1/2 pints
- 3/4 cup dried cranberries
- 2/3 cup apple juice or orange juice, or more as needed
- 2 cups (8 to 10 1/2 ounces) fresh or frozen and thawed cranberries
- 1 cup cold water
- 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small red onion, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon grainy mustard, or more to taste
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1. Place the dried cranberries in a saucepan and add enough apple juice or orange juice to cover the tart little roly-polies. Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat and let plump for 30 minutes.
- 2. Place the fresh or frozen cranberries and cold water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the cranberries have burst, 2 to 5 minutes. Add the sugar and honey and stir until dissolved. Remove from the heat and let cool slightly.
- 3. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a small skillet and sauté the onion until soft and translucent, 7 to 8 minutes. Add the vinegar and mustard and cook gently for another 5 minutes.
- 4. In a food processor, combine the plumped dried cranberries and their liquid, the cooled sugared cranberries and their liquid, and the onion mixture and pulse to the desired consistency. (If you want it really smooth, you can then press the mixture through a strainer, but it’s also quite nice when left chunky.) Season with salt and pepper to taste and stir to combine. Let cool completely, transfer to jars, cover, and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks. If serving straight from the refrigerator, taste again before using and, if needed, add salt and pepper to taste. (A chill tends to mute even otherwise robust flavors, so the chutney may seem underseasoned.)
Hungry for more? Chow down on these:
- Bartlett Pear Chutney with Dried Cherries and Ginger from Food in Jars
- Spiced Cranberry Apple Jam/Chutney from eCurry
- Pomegranate Walnut Relish from Leite's Culinaria
- Raw Cranberry Relish from Leite's Culinaria
Cranberry Chutney Recipe © 2012 Diana Henry. Photo © 2012 Laura Edwards. All rights reserved.