I am not usually a big chutney fan; I don’t often like the fruit and meat combination. No “pork chops & apple sauce” for me. But there is one chutney recipe that I swear by that is amazing with pork and as an integral part of a high “wow factor” appetizer.
For Easter dinner, the SO snagged a beautiful 10lb pork roast from our favourite local farmer who raises a few hogs on the side. During the cooking marathon on Easter as we prepared to feed the masses, we realized we needed something to complement the roast.
Thank goodness for small independent fruit & veg stores that stayed open during the holiday! I was able to get the apricots, dried cranberries, almonds and red onion required for my “go to” chutney recipe; I’ve served this with roast pork and tortiere, or stuffed into pork loin before cooking. If you have extra, it freezes well and makes a great & easy appetizer when piled onto a round of Brie, wrapped in phyllo pastry, baked and served warm with crackers.
There’s something about the combination of flavours in this particular chutney: I could eat it by the spoonful on its own. The balance of the tart cranberries with the sweet apricots, the bite of the mustard, the scent of the rosemary, the crunchiness of the almonds…I could go on but I won’t. I will just share the recipe and let you decide what you think.
Apricot, Cranberry & Rosemary Chutney
1. Start simmering about 1/4 cup of red wine vinegar and 1/4 cup of water in a small pot on the stove.
2. Coarsely chop around 250g of dried apricots and 1/2 large red onion. Add to simmering liquid along with around 200g of dried cranberries.
3. Stir in 2 tbs of mustard powder and 2 tbs of coarsely chopped fresh rosemary.
4. Allow to simmer on a low heat until the onion is soft and the liquid is almost absorbed. At this stage, I usually add more cider vinegar to the simmering process to get it to the consistency I like, but that would depend on your tastes…
5. When at the consistency you prefer, remove from heat and stir in about 1/4 cup of coarsely chopped almonds. Then serve.
You can add more flavours if you like: finely chopped garlic, grated lemon peel, some brown sugar, substitute dried cherries for the cranberries…it really depends on how you want to play with the sweet & savoury flavours.
As you can see from the last few posts, my cooking mojo is coming back after being dormant for too many months!