Cheery Cranberry Chutney

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Cranberries are definitely an underused fruit in my opinion.

This recipe stretches the season a bit, though it works fine as regular cranberry sauce.

I was especially intrigued by the no-work initial cooking method, which is baking rather than the traditional sauce pan boil.

In any event, it’s a great taste, and works especially nice as an appetizer paired with the cream cheese spread I posted yesterday.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 c pecans, chopped roughly and roasted in the oven at 350° for 10 minutes or in a saute pan for about 3 minutes. Careful not to let them burn.
  • 1 pkg. cranberries
  • 1 c sugar ( I substituted 1/3 c erythrithol  + 2 pkts of stevia or any sugar substitute that you like)
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 c Smucker’s (or other) low sugar orange marmalade (I couldn’t find this, so I used a fancy brand with a mix of orange, grapefruit, and tangerine)
  • 3 tbsp lemon juice

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Wash your berries and then drain.
  2. Place in a 9 x 9 baking dish along with the sugar and cinnamon, and mix
  3. Cover tightly with foil and bake at 350° for 45 minutes.
  4. Cool, and then add nuts and marmalade and lemon juice.
  5. Refrigerate.

SERVES: 2 cups

NOTES: There is no reason not to put this up in 1/2 c servings and freeze for later in the year. Some interesting variations would be to add some jalapeño minced or some raisins perhaps. We in the Southwest are addicted to adding heat to just about everything. Perhaps if you can get it, some chile honey might be substituted for some of the sugar at the beginning as well.

SOURCE: Maridee Dugger and Jacqueline Bryant, friends from Iowa sent these recipes to me.

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Cranberry Jelly

cranberrySo everybody makes cranberry relish. There are tons of recipes and I’ve made my share. I do like the stuff perfectly well.

But, and I hate to admit it, I actually like the jellied version maybe even more.

So you say, hey, I can’t put a bunch of slices from a can, WITH THE TIN CAN RINGS VISIBLE, on my holiday table. And indeed I agree. You should not.

But you can make your own. It’s incredibly easy and takes very little time. And it’s less sweet, and you can put your own flavorings like orange in it, or maybe even a jalapeño!

I will be making this from now on. I just love it.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 (12 ounce) bags fresh cranberries
  • 4 cups sugar (I use raw sugar)
  • The juice of one orange plus enough water to equal 4 cups
  • The zest of 1 orange

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Combine the sugar, orange juice, and water in big stockpot over high heat. Bring to a boil. Add the cranberries and return to a boil. Reduce the heat and boil gently for 10 minutes while the cranberries pop open.
  2. Pour into a fine-mesh sieve over a heat-proof bowl until all that remains is a paste of little twiggy bits and seeds from the cranberries and orange zest. Pour into sterile canning jars, leaving 1/4-inch head space. Wipe the rims, place new lids on the jars, and screw the rings into place until finger-tip tight.
  3. Store in the refrigerator OR place the jars filled with hot cranberry sauce in a canner and cover with hot water. Bring to a boil and process for 15 minutes, whether in a pint, pint and a half, or quart sized jar. Turn off the heat, remove the lid from the canner and let the jars remain in the water for five minutes before transferring to a wire rack or towel to cool overnight, undisturbed. Wipe the jars down, label them, and store in a cool, dark place for up to a year.

SERVES: 5 jelly jars for 1/2 of this recipe (If you are having a lot of people for the holiday meal, I’d forgo the canning entirely, since you will eat most of it.

NOTES: This makes a wonderful little gift to guests at Christmas. Just make sure you label the jars, put a nice little raffia bow around and make sure to tell them to store in the fridge if not canned. Also makes a nice gift to the hostess when you are visiting!

SOURCE: Foodiewithfamily

Cheddar Cheese Sauce

IMG_8242Oh cheddar cheese sauce, I do love thee. Let me count the ways.

Oh, well that could take all day.

What I don’t like is CheeseWiz, or that detestable crap called Velveeta. I mean the latter just tastes awful. I have tried it, I have I swear. I have thrown stuff out because it tastes like wallpaper paste with #3 yellow food coloring.

Soo.

The problem with making a traditional roux white sauce and then dumping in shredded cheddar, is that when heated, it separates into an oily mess. Very unappetizing.

But then I found this recipe, which solves that problem and makes a delightful, smooth gorgeous cheese sauce. And it’s very easy. Big plus. Do try. Perfect for homemade nachos, and daaarling, nachos must be homemade!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 8 oz cheddar cheese (I use sharp or extra sharp) shredded
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 12 oz can of evaporated milk
  • a good shot of hot sauce (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Heat the milk until it just comes to a boil.
  2. Take off the heat and stir in the cornstarch.
  3. Stir and return to heat until it thickens nicely.
  4. Turn off the heat and add the cheese, stirring until melted.
  5. Add the hot sauce and stir again.

SERVES: 2 cups

NOTES: Perfect for nachos, or over any vegetable that has been steamed crisp. Also will work beautifully with mac and cheese. You will see the difference when you reheat leftovers.

SOURCE: Serious Eats

 

 

Triumphant Lemon Cream Sauce

This is a sublime and gorgeous sauce.

It beautifully naps any number of things.

It’s easier to make than a Hollandaise or béarnaise.

It’s versatile. Oh I think I said that already.

I hope you will find many uses for it, and enjoy it as much as we do.

So read on.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 6 tbsp butter, separated 4 and 2
  • 1 tbsp shallots, minced
  • 1 lg clove garlic, micro-planed
  • 1/2 c white wine
  • 2/3 c cream
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • juice of up to one lemon

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Melt 4 tbsp butter in saute pan.
  2. Add the shallots and garlic, and saute lightly for a couple of minutes.
  3. Add the wine, bring to boil, and reduce to about 1/2
  4. Add the cream, whisking in, and bring to a very light simmer. Then turn off the heat.
  5. Add the lemon juice, tasting regularly until it is as tart as you wish it.
  6. Dice the remaining 2 tbsp of butter and drop in, turn on the heat, and melt out the butter, whisking until it;’s incorporated.
  7. Add the parsley, and salt and pepper as needed.

Serves: about 2/3 c

NOTE: You can make this and let it sit, which will cause it to thicken up a bit, and then just reheat lightly before serving. While it works wonderfully over chicken breasts and fish, it is terrific with sea food, and pastas and noodles as well. It pairs wonderfully with asparagus, and I would consider it with other “strong” vegetables like Brussel sprouts or spinach.

Top That Coney Island Dog

Detroit Coney Island

Listen up.

It’s school time. As in, you are about to be educated.

Not all Coney Island hot dogs are the same. Not by a long shot.

You’re about to receive a recipe, so it’s best you understand which one.

I worked in Detroit for years. Stepping out our back door, only a about 40 yards away, one entered the Coney Island that served the courts and Police headquarters.

I ate a million of them. The ones pictured at the right are from the Lafayette Coney Island, about a mile from where I worked. They are the same.

Notice that the topping is more a sauce with meat. I’m not sure how it’s made but I have an idea.

Flint Coney Island

About an hour north of Detroit, is Flint. (See you are getting a geography lesson too!)

 
Their version of a coney dog is represented to the left. It is a meaty thing.

I was born in Flint, and lived there until I was nearly through college.

I never ate a coney dog there as best as I can recall.

From what I have seen, most of the Midwest makes its coney dogs like one of these two versions.

Nathan’s Coney Island

Neither is to be confused with Nathan’s Coney Island dogs, which are made in Coney Island, NY.

 
I’ve never eaten one of them either.

They look very sauted oniony to me.

They don’t seem to have any meat sauce, and I think I see the hint of cheese, of the velveeta variety. Which I utterly abhor.

Not casting any aspersions on Nathan’s of course.

I might be wrong. It might be orange caviar.

The recipe you are getting today is the “Flint” coney. I made it and it’s very good. But I’m now pretty certain I’m going to search for the Detroit recipe.

Much thanks to Lynda Sweezey from JustaPinch who posted this one. I only changed a little bit of it.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1 sm onion, diced
  • 2 TBSP prepared yellow mustard
  • 2 TBSP vinegar
  • 2 TBSP sugar ( I would reduce to 1)
  • 1 TBSP water
  • 1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 tsp celery seed
  • 1/4 tsp tabasco sauce ( I used 2 tbsp homemade enchilada sauce, but any hot sauce you like will be fine)
  • 1/4 c ketchup or enough until the mixture is moist.

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. In a skillet, brown the meat and onion. Drain off any fat. Add everything but the ketchup and simmer on low for 35-40 minutes. Add the ketchup as needed to make it a bit saucy.
  2. To be reasonably authentic, you place the dog in the bun, cover with the “sauce” and then top with raw chopped onions and a good squiggle of ball park mustard.
  3. And don’t even think of picking it up to eat. It’s a fork food!

Serves: 6-8 hot dogs