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My Kumquat and Dried Cherry Chutney is an elegantly delicious accompaniment for your Thanksgiving dinner. Serve it in addition to the traditional cranberry sauce.
One of the things I like most about Thanksgiving are all the little “extras” that make it special. Special toppings for the pies, garnishes for the platters, and relishes to go complement with the turkey.
Of course, everyone is familiar with the traditional Cranberry and Orange Relish, but this one is a bit more unusual. It uses kumquats and dried cherries along with anise seed and other fragrant spices to make an excellent chutney to adorn your table.
Kumquats will always seem a little exotic to me. Not quite an orange nor a tangerine. Not a lemon either. I remember having them in our house around Christmas when I was growing up and we usually ate them out of hand, skin and all. The Kumquat Growers Association calls them “nature’s sweet-tart.” Pretty apt description.
This kumquat and dried cherry chutney is perfect for a southern Thanksgiving menu. Southerners have a long history with chutneys and relishes. Probably because of the old spice trade with the Charleston and Savannah ports.
Granted, this chutney lacks some of the classic ingredients such as raisins and onions. It has sweet and citrusy flavor with a perfect background note of licorice from the anise seed. I think you’ll really like it!
How to Make Kumquat Dried Cherry Chutney
Beautiful, fresh kumquats. Just waiting to be made into a delicious chutney.
Prepare the kumquats by giving them a rinse and then slicing them into disks. Remove the tiny seeds with the tip of a knife. Granted, this is a bit tedious, but just take your time and you’ll have it finished before you know it.
In a small, dry skillet over medium heat, toast mustard seeds and anise seed. Gently shake the pan back and forth until seeds are aromatic and lightly toasted, about 1-2 minutes.
Transfer the seeds to a heavy, small saucepan and add the remaining ingredients of sliced kumquats, sugar, orange juice, dried cherries, ginger, black pepper and cinnamon.
Bring the mixture to a boil stirring often. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until the chutney thickens and the kumquats become translucent, about 20-25 minutes.
Transfer to a bowl and allow to cool before serving. Store in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. Bring to room temperature before serving.
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Kumquat and Dried Cherry Chutney
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- ½ teaspoon anise seed
- 1 pint kumquats sliced and de-seeded
- 1 cup plus 2 tblsp sugar
- 1 ¼ cups orange juice
- 1 cup dried cherries
- ⅛ teaspoon ground ginger
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- In a small, dry skillet over medium heat, toast mustard seeds and anise seed. Gently shake the pan back and forth until seeds are aromatic and lightly toasted, about 1-2 minutes.
- Transfer seeds to a heavy, small saucepan with remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil stirring often.
- Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the chutney thickens and the kumquats become translucent, about 20-25 minutes.
- Transfer to a bowl and let cool before serving.
- Store in air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. Bring to room temperature before serving.
Nutrition information is calculated by software based on the ingredients in each recipe. It is an estimate only and is provided for informational purposes. You should consult your health care provider or a registered dietitian if precise nutrition calculations are needed for health reasons.