Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Cranberry Apple Chutney

Thanksgiving is just a week away so I thought I'd share some recipes that will be gracing our table this year. There are, of course, a few dishes that remain virtually unchanged year after year: the turkey is roasted simply with fresh vegetables and herbs; the sweet potatoes are baked with brown sugar and marshmallows; and the rice is made in our family's traditional way ... and there are no ifs, ands or buts about it.

But some dishes I like to tweak and experiment with include appetizers, the essential cranberry sauce and all the fall inspired desserts. So I thought I'd start with this cranberry chutney which I began making last year in place of plain cranberry sauce (which I still adore but sometimes a girl needs a little extra oomph). This is a great make-ahead recipe that's full of flavor and can have some texture depending on how thick you like to dice your apples.

Use apples that can withstand cooking a little better and not turn to mush: I'd say Gala, Rome, Jonagold or Winesap are your best bets. Also, freshly grated orange zest and juice as well as freshly grated ginger are key ... and if you're feeling adventurous, add some ground clove for a truly flavorful chutney that can not only serve as a worthy accompaniment to your turkey, but pair well with roasted pork loin, grilled pork chops and make an amazing addition to any sandwich.

Cranberry Apple Chutney
Makes 6 to 8 accompaniment servings

2 pounds of apples (about 4 large)
2 medium onions, thickly sliced
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1 tablespoon orange zest
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into cubes
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground mustard
2 cups fresh cranberries (I purchase fresh cranberries and freeze them for future use, then thaw before using)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Halve, and core apples (and if you prefer, peel them as well although I leave them unpeeled) then cut into 1-inch cubes. In a bowl combine the apples with the orange zest, orange juice, sugar, ginger, mustard and butter and stir lightly to coat. Place the mixture in a baking dish and bake for about 45 minutes. Stir the apple mixture a few times during baking.

Stir in the cranberries and bake for 15 to 20 minutes longer until the cranberries are soft and the chutney thick. You can make the chutney a couple of days in advance; just bring it to room temperature or warm it ever so slightly before serving with your roast turkey. Try it with roasted chicken or pork; better yet add it to a sandwich or wrap using leftover chicken or turkey breast ... trust me, you won't be disappointed.


theonikm said...

With me cranberries and chutney of any kind signal that wonderful feeling we get when we know the holidays are approaching and we have wonderful family and food to enjoy! This recipe looks so good, there won't be any leftovers!!

Peter G said...

This is lovely Maria. I could easily spread this on a roast pork sandwich...bookmarked definitely!

Konstantina said...

OMG Maria, these pictures are absolutely lovely!
And cranberry AND apple chutney? Fantastic!!!

Shopaholic said...

I was trying to look for some fresh cranberry but no luck. Never made chutney before, not my usual fave but yours look exceptional to me and it seems very approachable to make and I like the color (very cheerful) ! Janet @ Gourmet Traveller

Peter M said...

I would opt for some whole cloves, yes. This chutney would be good with any wild game. Some wild boar, perhaps?

Joan Nova said...

Our family usually adds orange zest and juice to the cranberries but I like the idea of apples equally. Maybe next year. Enjoy the holiday with your loved ones.

Karine said...

I have never had a cranberry crutney. Great recipe you have :)

Mediterranean kiwi said...

this looks beautiful and delicious
chutney hasn't quite caught on in crete - but i' ve always loved cooking with fruit myself

Ivy said...

I wish I had some cranberries to try this chutney.

Αγγελικη Ν said...

Maria πολύ ωραίο το chutney! Το έφτιαξα χθες και άλλαξε την εικόνα του τραπεζιού μου! Είχα ψητό χοιρινό από την προηγούμενη μέρα και ήθελα να το "βοηθήσω" με κάτι! Και τα κατάφερα! Ευχαριστώ!

Maria said...

Thank you all for your kind words! I enjoyed this with some balsamic chicken thighs the other day and will make it again to accompany our "big" bird next week.

Aggeliki, den xereis poso xairomai pou eftiaxes to chutney kai pano apo ola pou sou arese! Se euxaristw polu gia ta kala sou logia ... na eisai panta kala!