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Cranberry Orange Chutney With Cumin, Fennel and Mustard Seeds

Not sure where this recipe originated since it was in my binder for awhile. Since we have 10 pounds of cranberries in the freezer this year, I thought we should make use of them.  We served this as a side dish with a smoked pork loin, which I sliced into thin slices and reheated gently on top of the stove,  in a mixture of red grapefruit juice and some fresh rosemary. It would be great with poultry, i.e. instead of the usual cranberry relish. We also used it the next day with salmon. Equally good.  Enjoy! Buen provecho!

Cranberry Orange Chutney with Cumin, Fennel and Mustard Seeds

Ingredients

1 1/3 cups sugar

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

3 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds

1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds

1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard seeds

1 cup thinly sliced red onion

1 1 1/2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled, cut into matchstick-size strips

1 tablespoon minced seeded Serrano chile (without the seeds)

3/4 cup water

1 pound fresh cranberries or frozen, thawed

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1/4 cup matchstick-size strips orange peel (orange part only)

Pinch of salt

The Technique: Simmered

    Simmering (to cook at about 185°F) cooks the berries and other ingredients at just the right rate. How to tell if your sauce is simmering? Small bubbles should break the surface around the edges of the pan. This technique softens the berries and allows enough time for all of the flavors to meld.

Preparation

Bring sugar and vinegar to boil in heavy small saucepan, stirring until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and set aside.

    Heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add cumin, fennel, and mustard seeds; stir until mustard seeds pop, about 1 minute. Add onion; cook until beginning to brown, stirring constantly, about 6 minutes. Add ginger and chile; stir until chile softens, about 2 minutes. Add vinegar mixture, 3/4 cup water, all cranberries, orange peel, and salt. Simmer until juices thicken, stirring often, about 20 minutes. Cool, cover, and chill. DO AHEAD Can be made 3 days ahead. Keep chilled.

Barefoot in the Sand Cheese Ball – courtesy of Mary Walberg

I have hesitated in sending out this recipe as the McLaren’s cheese is not yet available here in Mexico. Yesterday we found a similar cheese at Superama in the Deli section made by Alouette. It is called Sharp Cheddar and is spreadable! For me it tasted very similar to the McLaren’s! No more need to bring it from Canada as long as they continue to stock it (If you want it you better get it before it is gone).

So here is our friend Mary’s recipe for the upcoming holiday seasons…the name refers to the name of Mary and Weldon’s place here in Mexico…

“BAREFOOT IN THE SAND” CURRIED CHEESE BALL

1 TUB OF McLAREN’S IMPERIAL CHEESE {red tub}

2 PACKAGES OF PHILADELPHIA CREAM CHEESE

RAISINS   ¼ cup (optional)

CHOPPED RED ONION -1/2/ cup

CURRY POWER   —to taste

CHUTNEY {mango ginger}

TOASTED ALMOND SLIVERS

So at room temp blend cheeses together {if you cannot find McLaren’s Imperial cheese use the strongest cheddar cheese you can find and grate}

Add raisins, red onion and curry powder.

Roll in the toasted almond slivers…

Serve with the jar of mango chutney poured over the top of the ball

The best crackers to serve with this ball are the “rice” crackers, which you can find at Superama in Merida!

NOTE: I have made a similar one to this using a third cheese – soft blue cheese. If you like blue cheese, try Mary’s recipe, add a small amount of blue cheese, omitting the raisins, curry and chutney, and roll in chopped walnuts. I usually wrap mine in wax paper until I am ready to use it.