Cranberries are a holiday staple in our home. Cranberry sauce, apple cranberry bread pudding, dried cranberries in dressing or in salads, and cranberry cocktails are common place during the holiday season. I am not particularly a fan of cranberry sauce, so when I found today’s recipe for Cranberry chutney, I had to give it a shot.
The origin of chutney is India and is typically prepared with fruits or vegetables, vinegar, sugar, spices and herbs. Today’s recipe is no exception. In addition to fresh cranberries, there are dried cranberries, apple, orange juice, vinegar, onion, celery and a fair amount of spices. The resulting chutney is a deep burgundy color and has a delicious tangy flavor.
The recipe is scalable. I made a half batch the first time and have doubled it on other occasions. If you have any doubts, make a half batch. If you like it make more but don’t delay as fresh cranberries are typically only available until January. Make this chutney ahead of time and that’s one less thing you must do during the holidays. Live, Laugh, Love and Eat Well
Yields 8 – ½ pint jars
- 2 cups apple cider vinegar
- 1½ cups orange juice
- 2 cups dried cranberries
- 2 cups Granny Smith apples, chopped (I leave peels on)
- 2 cups onions, chopped
- 1½ cups celery, chopped
- 2 – 12oz bags for fresh cranberries, rinsed and drained
- 2½ cups sugar
- 4 tsp cinnamon
- 1 TBSP ginger, freshly grated or 1½ tsp powdered ginger
- ½ tsp ground cloves
Prepare the jars by placing them in a boiling water bath for 5 to 10 minutes. If you have hard water, use about ½ cup of white vinegar with the water to reduce the haze on the jars. Don’t throw out this water as it can be used for the final processing.
In a large heavy bottomed pot, soak the dried cranberries in the mixture of apple cider vinegar and orange juice while you chop the other ingredients. Chop the apples first and add them to the pot to prevent browning. Then add the onion, celery, and fresh cranberries to the pot and start heating on high heat. Add the sugar and spices. Mix the ingredients and bring the mixture to a boil.
Once the mixture starts to boil, you will notice the fresh cranberries begin to burst. Reduce the heat to maintain a low boil and check your seasoning after about 15 minutes. The chutney will thicken after 30 to 45 minutes as the volume reduces. Stir gently but often to keep the chutney from scorching.
Place your canning lids in a hot water bath around 180 F to soften up the silicone seals. Keep them in the water until you have filled the jars and are ready to cap. Bring your canning water bath up to a rolling boil and start filling your jars. You can eat the remaining chutney right away but if you have more than a ½ pint, I would prepare another jar for canning.
Use a clean canning funnel to fill the prepared jars with chutney. Leave about ½ inch of headspace and wipe the rim of the jar with a damp paper towel. Place the warmed cap and ring on the jar and tighten just until you feel resistance.
Process the jars for 10 to 12 minutes in the boiling water. Remove the jars with a jar lifter from the hot water and place them on a dish towel on the counter. As the jars cool, you may hear a “pop” which is a sign that the jar has sealed. Let the jars sit until completely cool or overnight. Check the lids and rings. Some people remove the rings at this point, but I tend to leave them on and even snug them down a bit. The chutney is ready to go into the pantry, to be eaten or given as gifts.
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