I love Thanksgiving! It’s my favorite eating holiday of the entire year and I love that almost everyone in America eats some variation of the same meal. There are a handful of dishes that I need to have for it to be a perfect and complete Thanksgiving meal. The turkey, of course, is a given. The dressing is a must have (I still call it stuffing even though it’s not stuffed and cooked inside our turkey) and my favorite: the cranberry chutney! OH, how I love the cranberry chutney! If its not part of the meal I get very grumpy – ask The Hubs! He might say that I also get very grumpy when there isn’t enough stuffing, but that’s another story.
Growing up I used to complain all the time about being given the canned cranberry sauce. I never ate it, turning my nose up at it when it was passed around the table. To me there was just something not very appetizing about cranberry sauce in the shape of a can, dumped on to a small plate and served as if it were the equal of the other dishes. I thought to myself that there must be something better. Luckily, The Husband has found that “something better” and this recipe is it!
I love that this chutney is made with all fresh ingredients: whole fresh cranberries, oranges, apples and spices, with a nice nuttiness and crunch from the chopped walnuts. AND, it’s so easy to make. Everything is thrown into one big pot to break down and cook together. It’s tart, sweet, tangy and spicy all rolled into one and has a wonderfully thick and chunky consistency. Of course you can eat it with the turkey, but I also like it on my biscuits and even with the stuffing.
This chutney makes my heart sing and my tummy very happy. I hope, dear reader, that if you decide to try out this recipe (and it doesn’t have to be for Thanksgiving – it would go perfectly with pork chops) you will feel the same about it as I do. Maybe it will become your must have side dish every year on Thanksgiving as well.
Twelve years ago I found a version of this Cranberry Chutney Recipe on www.culinarycafe.com when I cooked Thanksgiving Dinner for Wifey for the first time. Although delicious, it was a bit sweet and the cooking instructions weren’t too clear, so over time I adapted the recipe to suit our tastes. It now is one of Wifey’s requirements for every Thanksgiving Dinner and I’m quite sure if given a chance she would intake this stuff through a beer bong. Hope you enjoy this simple but fantastic recipe.
1 cup Sugar
1 cup Raisins
Grated rind from all 4 small oranges listed below
1/2 cup Orange juice
1/2 cup Walnuts
2 tbsp. White vinegar
I tsp. Ground ginger
2 tsp. Cinnamon
I tsp. Nutmeg
1/2 tsp. Ground cloves
4 cup Fresh cranberries
4 Small oranges. peeled and cut into small cubes
I cup Chopped Granny Smith apples
Combine all ingredients except last 3 in a large saucepan. Heat over medium high, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Add cranberries and cook until cranberries start to pop. Add oranges and apples Turn to medium-low and simmer until everything is broken down, about another 60 to 90 minutes. Let cool, then refrigerate. Will keep in refrigerator for 2 weeks. The leftovers can be frozen in freezer baggies for up to I year.