A do-ahead Thanks­giv­ing side: Spiced cran­berry chut­ney

China Daily (USA) - - DINING | LIFE - By MEERA SODHA

Al­though Thanks­giv­ing is the quin­tes­sen­tial Amer­i­can hol­i­day, some ofmy Amer­i­can friends and I cel­e­brate it here in Lon­don ev­ery year.

A fewyears back, af­ter cook­ing a turkey curry, I learned the hard way never to mess with the tra­di­tional roasted turkey, the star of the show. Since then my con­tri­bu­tion is al­ways to spice up the sides, quite lit­er­ally. This year I’ve nar­rowedmy fo­cus to cran­ber­ries.

There are only a hand­ful of cran­berry farms in the UK, partly be­cause they can only grow un­der very spe­cial con­di­tions, like acidic peat soil and fresh run­ning wa­ter that are more com­monly found in the United States. So when I see them in Lon­don su­per­mar­kets, I get very ex­cited.

My fa­vorite thing to do with them, in the run up to our Thanks­giv­ing dinner, is to turn them into a rich sticky chut­ney. A lit­tle sugar helps counter the ex­treme acidic sour­ness these fresh berries can have, while a fewwarm­ing spices like cloves, black pep­per and red chili add just enough heat and zing to perk up the turkey.

Hap­pily, this chut­ney is not just forThanks­giv­ing. It works really well in cheese sand­wiches, and along­side ham and game meats. It can be pre­pared a few weeks in ad­vance too, giv­ing you more time to have a hol­i­day on ac­tual Thanks­giv­ing.

Spiced Cran­berry Chut­ney

Start to fin­ish: 45 min­utes Serv­ings: 24 (Makes three 1-cup jars) 3 ta­ble­spoons canola oil 1 cin­na­mon stick 1 tea­spoon black mus­tard seeds 2 red onions, diced 5 cups cran­ber­ries, fresh or if frozen, thawed 2/3 cup su­perfine sugar 2 ta­ble­spoons white wine vine­gar 2 ta­ble­spoons le­mon juice 1/2 tea­spoon ground cloves 1/4 tea­spoon ground black pep­per 1/2 tea­spoon ground cumin 3/4 tea­spoon chili pow­der 1/2 tea­spoon kosher salt Ster­il­ize your jars by wash­ing them in hot soapy wa­ter, then rinse them and let them dry in a cool (135 C) oven. Or use dish­washer-clean jars fresh from the ma­chine. Heat the oil in a large deep pan over medium heat. When hot, add the mus­tard seeds and cin­na­mon stick. When the seeds pop, add the onion and cook for around 10 to 12 min­utes or un­til the onion is translu­cent and turn­ing golden. Add the cran­ber­ries to the pan along with the sugar, le­mon juice, white-wine vine­gar and fol­low with cloves, pep­per, cumin, chili and salt. Stir and bring to a boil be­fore leav­ing to sim­mer for around 20 min­utes un­til the chut­ney thick­ens. Bot­tle in ster­il­ized jars and re­frig­er­ate. This chut­ney will keep for up to 3 weeks. Nu­tri­tion in­for­ma­tion per serv­ing: 54 calo­ries; 16 calo­ries from fat; 2 g fat (0gsat­u­rated; 0 g trans fats); 0mg choles­terol; 43mg­sodium; 10 g car­bo­hy­drate; 1 g fiber; 8 g sugar; 0 g pro­tein. Meera Sodha is an In­dian foods ex­pert and author of Made in In­dia: Recipes from an In­dian fam­ily kitchen.

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