This port-enriched cranberry relish, made with red onions, is perfect for serving with roast turkey at Christmas or Thanksgiving. It is also good served with cold meats or stirred into beef, lamb or game casseroles, for a touch of sweetness. It improves with a months ageing and it can be made several months in advance of the festive season, making great gifts.
Cranberry Relish Recipe
Makes about 1 Kg of relish to pot. Leave to mature for at least 1 month. The relish will keep unopened for up to 6 months.
- 500g cranberries (fresh or frozen)
- 500g small red onions
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 250g soft light brown sugar
- 150ml red wine vinegar
- 150ml port (fortified red wine)
- 1 tbsp mustard seeds
- 4 tsp ground ginger
- 80ml fresh orange juice
- freshly ground sea-salt and black pepper (to taste)
Cut the red onions in half, and then slice them very thinly. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan, add the onions and cook them over a very low heat for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally until softened (do not brown). Add 2 tbsp of the sugar, and cook for a further 5 minutes, until the onions caramelize. Remove the frying pan from the heat, then season with freshly ground sea salt and pepper (to taste).
Put the cranberries in a saucepan, with the remaining sugar, the vinegar, port, orange juice, mustard seeds and ground ginger. Heat gently until the sugar has dissolved, then cover the saucepan with a lid (important) and bring this up to the boil. Stir frequently.
Simmer the cranberry relish mixture for 15 minutes, until the berries have burst, and are tender, then stir in the caramelized onions from the frying pan.
Increase the heat slightly and cook for a further 10 minutes, (un-covered) stirring the mixture frequently, until it has reduced and thickened significantly.
Transfer the relish to warm, sterilized jars. To pot the relish: it is best to use a wide-necked jam funnel to transfer the relish into the sterilized jars. Use a long-handled teaspoon (or similar) to press and poke the relish right down into the pots to exclude any trapped air pockets. Press wax discs on the surface of the relish before sealing the jar. Wipe the jars immediately, then label them when they are cold.
To Store: store in a cool, dark place and leave to mature for at least 1 month. The relish will keep unopened for up to 6 months. Once the jars have been opened, store them in the refrigerator.
– Use dry, sterilized preserving pots or jars to store your preserve in. Always sterilize all the jars and lids etc, run them through a dishwasher on a hot rinse setting, or wash, rinse and then put them in the oven for 10 minutes on a medium heat. Be careful if using rubber seals etc., do them separately. Sterilized storage equipment means you can keep your preserve for well over six months when made. –