Spicy Curried Cranberry Chutney

YIELDS | 10-12 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 15 MINS

COOK TIME | 20 MINS

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I am not a fan of basic cranberry sauce as it often times too sweet and lacks a depth of flavor. If you want to kick up your holiday dinner game a notch, try this beautifully bright and spicy cranberry chutney. Feel free to add more red pepper flake and or curry to jazz it up even more and add additional brown sugar if you prefer the sauce on the sweeter side. This recipe will not disappoint.

INGREDIENTS

¼ cup dried apricots, finely chopped
½ cup brown sugar, or more if you like a sweeter chutney 

½ dried sweet cranberries
1/2 cup raisons, golden or regular
1 cup water
1/4 cup cider vinegar 
3 cups fresh cranberries
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and chopped
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
¼ cup chopped crystallized ginger
1-1” piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon curry powder, optional
Kosher salt to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

1. In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine apricots, brown sugar, dried sweet cranberries, raisins, vinegar and water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer and cook for 5 minutes, stirring often.

2. Stir in cranberries, apple and lemon zest; simmer for 10 minutes more.

3. Stir lemon juice, both gingers and pepper flakes and curry powder, if using. Add salt to taste and cook for 1-2 more minutes and remove from heat and let cool.

4. Refrigerate until ready to use. Remove from refrigerator an hour before serving. Best served slightly chilled or at room temperature.

NOTES

I like to make this recipe a few days in advance and let it sit in the refrigerator covered. This allows time for the flavors of the spices and fruit to combine.
Double Duty Recipe: Make extra to serve a few days later for dessert. Warm on the stove and drizzle or pour over a scoop of good vanilla ice cream.

Smoked Tandoori Chicken

YIELDS | 6 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 5 min plus marinating time

COOK TIME | 45 MINS

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Baked or smoked this dish is a winner. The Indian spice comes through beautifully in this easy to make version of Tandoori Chicken. Serve with cool cucumber-yogurt and warm naan for a complete meal.

INGREDIENTS

• 3 lbs Chicken Thighs. Skin removed, optional
• 1 Cup Greek Yogurt, Plain
• 2 Tbsp Garam Masala, Powder
• 2 Tbsp Tandoori Powder, or Vindaloo paste
• 2 Tbsp Garlic, Crushed
• 2 Tbsp Ghee or Butter, Melted
• 2 Limes
• 2 Drops Red Food Color, Optional

INSTRUCTIONS

1. Remove skin from chicken thighs (optional) and make 3 cuts or slices in the meat down to the bone.
2. In a large bowl, add the plain yogurt.
3. Add all the spices, garlic and food coloring, if using, to the yogurt and mix well.
4. Place the chicken thighs in the yogurt/spice mixture and massage the mixture into the meat.
5. Cover and refrigerate for 1-4 hours.

Baking or Smoking:
1. Once the chicken is finished marinating, set the oven or smoker to 375 degrees.
2. Place the chicken on a foil lined baking pan that has the melted ghee or butter on it, squirt some lime juice onto each piece of chicken and place in the oven or smoker.

Baking
1. Leave in oven for 45 minutes and then test it to see if it is done. Chicken should be 165 degrees.
2. When temperature reaches 165, remove from oven, squirt with more lime, a sprinkle of kosher salt, a bit of garam masala and let rest for 10 minutes.

Smoking (I use hickory wood chips)
1. Smoke chicken for 40 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 and smoke for 10-15 minutes more or until chicken reaches 165 degrees.
2. Remove from smoker, squirt with more lime, a sprinkle of kosher salt, a bit of garam masala and let rest for 10 minutes.

Serve with basmati rice and naan bread (Indian bread).

NOTES

Double Duty Recipe:
Use leftover chicken to make Tandoori Chicken Salad, see website for recipe.

Happy Eating!

Winter Squash and Mushroom Curry

YIELDS | 4 SERVINGS

PREP TIME | 15 MINS

COOK TIME | 20 MINS

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This dish is a one pot wonder. It is filling, full of flavor and can be served as a side, served over rice or add cooked chicken or tofu for a complete meal.

INGREDIENTS

* 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
* 10 ounces butternut or other winter squash, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
* Kosher salt and black pepper
* 1 or 2 small green chiles, such as jalapeño or serrano pepper
* 3 medium shallots or 1 small onion, finely diced
* 1⁄2 teaspoon black mustard seeds
* 1⁄2 teaspoon cumin seeds
* Handful of fresh or frozen curry leaves (optional)
* 2 garlic cloves, minced
* 1 teaspoon ground coriander
* Pinch of ground cayenne
* 1⁄2 teaspoon ground turmeric
* 1 pound mushrooms, any type though a variety adds extra flavor, rinsed tried and coarsely chopped.
* 3⁄4 cup coconut milk
* 2 tablespoons lime juice
* Cilantro sprigs, coarsely chopped, for garnish

INSTRUCTIONS

1. In a wide pan, heat oil over medium-high. When hot, add squash cubes in one layer. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 2 minutes, letting cubes brown slightly, then flip and cook for 2 minutes more. Use a slotted spoon to lift squash out, and set aside.
2. Cut a lengthwise slit in each chile to open it, but leave whole. (This helps the chiles heat the sauce without making it too spicy.)
3. Add shallots, a pinch of salt and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds and curry leaves, if using, and let sizzle for 30 seconds, then add garlic, coriander, cayenne, turmeric and chiles. Stir well and cook for 30 seconds more.
4. Add mushrooms, season with salt and toss to coat. Cook, stirring, until mushrooms begin to soften, about 5 minutes.
5. Return squash cubes to skillet, stir in coconut milk and bring to a simmer. Lower heat to medium and simmer for another 5-10 minutes. If mixture looks dry, thin with a little water or broth.
6. Season to taste with kosher salt and garnish with cilantro.

NOTES

Timesaver: Buy already peeled and cut squash to save time on busy weekday evenings.