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Easy Cranberry Chutney

No photo for this one as it is all blended together in a jar and then refrigerated. Great for using during the upcoming holidays…

Easy Cranberry Chutney

From inthekitchenwithkath.com

(Adapted from a recipe in Yumana’s Table by Yumana Devi)

Makes about 3 cups, and doubles easily if you’re serving a crowd.

1 (12-ounce) bag of cranberries

2 large apples

2 large oranges or limes

1 cup pure maple syrup (I used ½ cup)

  1. Zest the oranges.
  2. Wash and drain the cranberries and put them in a pot. (My 3 quart pot is the perfect size.)
  3. Peel, core, and chop the apples, and add them to the pot.
  4. Juice the oranges. Add the juice and the orange zest to the pot.
  5. Add the maple syrup.
  6. Bring the chutney to a boil over medium-high heat.
  7. Reduce heat to medium. Cook, uncovered, for about 30 – 45 minutes, until the cranberries have popped, the apples have cooked down, and the chutney has thickened a bit. Stir it occasionally while it’s cooking.
  1. Cool and transfer to a bowl; cover and refrigerate until ready to serve OR put it in an airtight jar, ready for use. Would be great over cream cheese as an appetizer or with roast beef…not just turkey!
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Cranberry-Lime Infused Vodka

Ok…tired of my Keto recipes. Get ready for Christmas with this festive infused vodka! Makes a perfect hostess gift….do it NOW!

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1 16 oz. glass bottles with toppers (mine have corks)

1 bag fresh cranberries (I counted 150 berries…LOL).

2 limes, peeled with as little pith as possible

2 tbsp sugar

Vodka

Using a knife, pierce each cranberry so the vodka can seep into the berries.  (I took each one and pierced it with an icepick using a cutting board underneath). Alternately fill each bottle with the cranberries and the lime peels. When bottle is full of berries, add sugar. Pour vodka into the bottle until full. Allow to sit and mature for 2 weeks to a month. Be sure to shake the bottles every couple of days to help the flavors meld.

Oat Bars with Banana and Applesauce

Oat Bars with Banana and Applesauce

 3 mashed bananas

1/3 cup applesauce (or mash a slightly cooked peeled apple in the with the bananas)

3 Tablespoons almond butter

2 cups oats

¼ cup almond milk

½ cup dried cranberries (experiment with other dried fruits, i.e. figs, blueberries, etc.)

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon cinnamon

What the heck, add a few sliced almonds to the top before baking?

Go for it…add some coconut, too!

Bake 15 to 20 minutes at 350 degrees F.

Let cool and slice.

Would also make a great dessert if you slightly heated the bars and then served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

McIntosh Dark Christmas Cake

Okay…I hear ya! It may seem too early to start this, but trust me, NOW is the right time to make this cake! Once baked and wrapped and stored, you are going to take it out every two or three weeks and brush it with your favourite brandy! Keep doing that right up until the cakes are all gone!! You won’t regret it…

FYI…this is Larry’s mother’s recipe with a slight change. Since we had no cherries, we replaced them with dried cranberries. He also added some Kirsch to make up for the lack of cherry flavour… BTW…MY mother used glazed pineapple too!

Mrs. McIntosh’s Dark Christmas Cake*

Fruit Mixture:

3 cups seedless raisins

3 cups Sultana raisins

1 cup dates cut up

1.5 cup dried cranberries OR glazed cherries

3 cups mixed peel

1 cup chopped pecans OR walnuts

Dry Ingredients:

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp. salt

3 tsp.cinnamon

½ tsp. nutmeg

¼ tsp. mace

½ tsp. ginger

¼ tsp. ground cloves

Wet Ingredients:

10 Tablespoons butter

10 Tablespoons shortening (Crisco)

8 eggs

1.5 cups brown sugar

2/3 cup orange juice

Line 2 loaf pans with heavy waxed paper and brown paper.

Preparation:

Soak fruit with 1/3 cup Kirsch liqueur

Add the nuts; dust with ¼ cup flour.

Stir Dry Ingredients (remaining flour and spice) together in a separate bowl.

Cream Wet Ingredients (shortening, butter and sugar), beating together until fluffy.

Add eggs ONE AT A TIME, beating well after each.

Blend in dry ingredients; fold in ½ fruit and nut mixture.

Add orange juice slowly while mixing in, and then add second half fruit mixture.

Fill prepared pans 2/3 full.

Bake in a slow oven (300 degrees) 2 hours or until done. Place a pan of hot water in a shallow pan on bottom rack during baking. Remove after one hour!

Cool before removing paper; re-wrap and store in an airtight container in a cool place.

DON’T FORGET THE BASTING EVERY TWO OR THREE WEEKS….. I personally like brandy!

Cranberry Pistachio Salted Caramel Bars

Squeezing this one in at popular request… Larry made these for a pre-Christmas get together. The recipe is found in the 2012 Holiday Issue of Food and Drink (LCBO Magazine available only in Ontario). They were awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They would be great for your New Year’s Eve celebrations….

Cranberry Pistachio Salted Caramel Bars (LCBO)

Cookie Base :

1 ¼ cups all purpose flour

½ cup wheat germ

1 teaspoon salt

¾ cup unsalted butter softened

¾ cup packed light brown sugar

1 large egg YOLK

Filling :

2 cups sugar

½ cup water

2 Tablespoons corn syrup

1/3 cup whipping cream, heated

1 ½ teaspoons salt

3 Tablespoons unsalted butter cut into pieces

1 cup unsalted and roasted pistachios, chopped

1 ½ cups dried cranberries, plumped in boiling water for 10 minutes and drained

½ teaspoon sea salt (optional)*

Preheat oven to 350 F or 180 C.

Line a 9 x 13 baking pan with parchment paper. Set aside.

Combine flour, wheat germ and salt. Set aside in a bowl.

Combine butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and beat together until light and fluffy. Beat in the yolk until combined. Add in flour mixture and beat until combined. Crumble dough into prepared baking pan and use damp fingers to press into a single layer with a slight lip at the edges. Bake for 25 minutes or until dry to the touch and golden. Set aside.

Combine sugar, water and corn syrup in a heavy bottom pot and stir just enough to moisten the sugar. Place pot over medium heat, bring to simmer and cook without stirring for 10 minutes or until deeply golden (between 320 and 340F OR 159 to 170C) on a candy thermometer.

Working quickly and carefully, add cream and salt, stirring to combine and then add butter (1Tablespoon at a time) until incorporated. Remove from heat.  Let caramel stand for 10 minutes to cool slightly then add pistachios and cranberries and stir until coated.

Scrape caramel mixture onto the prepared cookie base and use a spatula to even out topping. Return to oven and bake for 15 minutes or until caramel is bubbling at the edge.

Sprinkle bars with salt if desired. Let cool for two hours to firm up and then remove from pan. Peel down parchment and cut into 48 rectangular bars. Will keep well in a sealed container for one week at room temperature.

Brandied Fruit and Nut Cookies

This recipe is from my blogging friend, Karen. Since today’s earlier recipe might not be ready in time for the holidays, I am sending you one of HER cookie recipes which I just baked. I didn’t bother with the glaze…your choice… Check out her other recipes as well as beautiful photos of her home in New England at Christmas – http://backroadjournal.wordpress.com

Brandied Fruit and Nut Cookies BYJ

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  •  1/3 c. brandy (I used Calvados apple brandy)
  • 1/2 c. golden raisins
  • 1/2 c. orange flavored Craisins or dried cranberries
  • 1 c. dried apricots, chopped in small pieces
  • 3/4 c. packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 c. butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. ginger
  • 2 c. flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 c. chopped pecans

Mix the fruit and brandy in a bowl and let marinate for 10 minutes. Cream together the brown sugar, butter, eggs and spices. Drain the brandy from the fruit into the sugar mixture and stir. Mix in the flour and baking powder. Stir in the reserved fruit and nuts.

Drop cookie dough by rounded teaspoonfuls onto a Silpat or parchment lined baking sheet. They do spread out so if you want them smaller, follow the directions and keep small). Bake about 10 minutes or until the cookies are light brown. Place cookies on cooling rack. Makes about 5 dozen cookies.

If you wish to glaze the cookies mix 2 c. of powdered sugar, 2 to 3 Tbsp. brandy and 1 tsp. vanilla together and dip the tops of the cookies into glaze and let dry.

Slow Cooker Porridge

Porridge you say? Well we have been in Ontario for two weeks now and so far, it has rained, snowed, sleeted and been quite cold. I should have had lots of time to send new posts, but moving around has its drawbacks with, aka Internet problems.

Today? It’s raining as it always seems to do when we travel anywhere in the world. Fortunately, our friend Joan on Howe Island where we were staying made us this great porridge yesterday morning to warm our bodies. It was great, as was our visit with she and Gary!! Thanks Joan and Gary for a wonderful visit!!

So, for all you northerners, here is the recipe  made by Joan…

4 cups water

1 cup steel cut oats (available at Loblaws …you guys in Mexico can buy rolled oats)

1’2 cup milk

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1’2 cup chopped dried figs

1/2 cup raisins or chopped dates

I think you could use almost any combination of dried fruits, i.e. mango, apples, bananas, etc.

Put all ingredients into the slow cooker on low just before you go to bed (assuming you don’t go to bed at 7 pm…or get up at noon!)

When you wake up it will be ready! Next I will look for slow cooker coffee…since I can’t figure out how to set the coffee maker yet…haha

Cranberry Date Squares

In his quest for the ultimate date square and his love of all things cranberry, here is Larry’s version of the old-fashioned date square.

Date Squares with Cranberries

Adapted from Food and Drink Magazine (LCBO) AUTUMN 2007

BY LUCY WAVERMAN

If you like thinner squares use a larger pan. Although the original recipe does not call for grated orange rind you can add about 1 tbsp (15 mL) to the filling mixture for a flavour contrast.

4 cups (1 L) chopped, pitted dates OR 3 cups dates and 1 cup fresh cranberries OR 2 + 2

¾ cup (175 mL) sugar (omit the sugar if using the cranberries*)

¾ cup (175 mL) orange juice

½ tsp (2 mL) lemon juice

2 cups (500 mL) flour

2 cups (500 mL) quick-cooking oats

1½ cups (375 mL) brown sugar

½ tsp (2 mL) baking powder

½ tsp (2 mL) baking soda

½ tsp (2 mL) salt

1½ cups (375 mL) melted butter, cold

DIRECTIONS

1. Preheat oven to 325°F (160°C).

2. Combine dates, cranberries, sugar*, orange juice and lemon juice in a large pot. Heat over medium-low heat, stirring periodically, for 7 minutes or until mixture combines and becomes spreadable.

3. Grease and line an 8 x 10-inch (20 x 25-cm) baking pan with parchment paper. Grease again.

4. Combine flour, oats, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and melted butter in a large bowl. Mix well. Divide mixture in half. Press half of the mixture into prepared baking sheet.

5. Spread date mixture over bottom crust and sprinkle with remaining flour mixture. Press down slightly.

6. Bake for 15 to 25 minutes or until topping is flecked with gold. Cool completely and refrigerate for 2 hours or until filling is set. Cut into squares and keep in a cookie tin, not the refrigerator.

Makes about 20 squares

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.