A jar of Christmas cheer: Cranberry and Apple Chutney

My trio of Christmas preserves is finally complete! The last instalment is a chutney to liven up a plate of cold meats or transform a cheese sarnie into something a little bit special.

Cranberries are such a jolly looking fruit, the various shades of red make a stunning little festive display.

I’ve not been organised enough to have made this chutney in time to be eaten this Christmas, but hopefully the recipients will have the patience to wait a couple of months to unleash the russet red preserve.

Making chutney is such a doodle compared to jam. No testing involved and not a thermometer in sight. You just need a few hours to let the fruit bubble gently on the stove, wafting gorgeous spicy smells around the house. I reckon I could be making a fair amount of chutney in 2011.

I got six 8oz jars out of this recipe

Cranberry and Apple Chutney
Makes 1.3kg

25g butter
350g onions, chopped
450g bramley apples, peeled and sliced
1 tsp mixed spice
350g cranberries, fresh or frozen
450g light soft brown sugar
425ml white malt vinegar

1. Melt the butter in a large pan and then add the onions, apples and mixed spice and cook gently until the onions are soft and the apple has mulched. This should take about 15 minutes.

2. Next up add the cranberries and sugar stirring until the sugar has dissolved – this only takes a few minutes.

3. Pour in the vinegar and bring to the boil, stirring every now and again.

4. Turn down the heat and simmer for 90 minutes, until the chutney has reduced down and thickened.

5. Spoon into cooled, sterilised jars and cover with a vinegar-proof lid. Label and store for 2 months before opening.

Always best to have everything laid out and ready

Dissolving the sugar and bringing to the boil

After 90 minutes of gentle bubbling on the stove

Spooning the warm chutney into jars

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About Katie Bryson

Katie Bryson is a freelance food writer and blogger. She left a career in online news at the BBC to immerse herself in the culinary world, taking in courses at Leiths School of Food and Wine and an internship at Waitrose along the way. Her family food blog www.feedingboys.co.uk is bursting with recipes and tips for feeding hungry families that’ll help inspire all those frazzled parents out there wondering what on earth to cook for tea! She lives in West London with her two young boys and yes, her firefighter husband.
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