Cranberry sauce is definitely a staple during the winter season. It's tart delicious flavor pairs great with spicy heat or as a side to any main meat dish. Growing up we never had cranberry sauce because one, I am South Asian, and two because my mom turned everything into chutney. Chutney is a staple in South Asian cuisine as a side relish or pureed spiced sauce.
As a child I LOVED Imly (tamarind) chutney with everything I ate and I remember during the winters the tamarind, which was brown in color suddenly turned red. My mom would use the same jar to store the chutney but never explained why the chutney changed color. (Probably because she knew I wouldn't eat it if she said cranberries).
Thanks to my genius mom who I consider the best cook, I've followed in the tradition of Tamarind chutney in the spring/summer and Cranberry chutney in the fall/winter. So here's a spin on the usual cranberry sauce turned chutney favorite and eating seasonal. :)
12 oz Fresh Cranberries
1/2 cup Pomegranate (optional)
1 Red Bell Pepper (seeds reserved)
4 Clementines or 1 Sm Orange (juiced)
1 tsp Ground Red Chili Pepper
Pinch of Salt
3 Garlic Cloves (mashed)
1/2 to 3/4 Sugar (or sweetener of choice)
Cut a bell pepper in cubes and set aside the seeds for later.
Add all the ingredients to a pot EXCEPT the seeds we set aside for later.
Mix and cook all the ingredients for 15 to 20 minutes until the cranberries burst, the bell peppers soften, the sugar dissolves and the chutney thickens slightly.
Using an immersion blender or blender, carefully puree the chutney until it's smooth.
Taste to adjust sweetness and spice, then mix in the reserved bell pepper seeds and let it cool.
Pour into an airtight glass container and store in the refrigerator for up to 10 days.
Serve it with grilled chicken, in a sandwich, with cream cheese and crackers or my favorite way, as a dipping sauce for Samosas!
I hope you enjoy this seasonal chutney favorite and give it a try soon!