At some point in my adult life I've come to realize that despite all my efforts, I am in fact, beginning to turn into my parents. It's mostly in small ways. For instance, as a teen I couldn't figure out why on earth you'd want to spend a day cutting up fruit and putting it into jars and canning it. Mom would buy flats of berries or bushels of peaches or cucumbers etc. and have us kids help peel, cut, and ladle into jars. I thought this was not only an extremely boring way to spend the day, but it was practically on the verge of torture! After all canned fruit and preserves can be bought at the store and they're not that expensive. So why, was my question. Yes we had a big family, but it's just a jar of peaches! I remember quite clearly on one such peach preserving Saturday, swearing that I would NEVER. EVER. can ANYTHING when I was an adult! Of course I swore this quietly, to myself, as our grumbling had no affect on our mother at all. She'd just say that we wouldn't be complaining the next winter while we were eating whatever it was we were helping her preserve.
Then one day I find myself making strawberry preserves and fig chutney with great gusto. See right there no matter how hard you fight it, your parents slip in and take over your thinking. Now I completely get why Mom made her own bread and chopped up everything she could get her hands on and threw it in a jar or the freezer. Oh and it's not all torture to can things, in fact it's kind of fun...and the transformation is complete!
Recently I bought The Complete Book of Small Batch Preserving, and was very excited about it, I might add. It's full of all kinds of wonderful recipes for preserving almost anything. When I saw the recipe for Cranberry Rum Relish, I couldn't wait to make it. It's delicious and just tastes like the holidays. It would be great with turkey or chicken. I think it will be on our Thanksgiving table this year.
CRANBERRY RUM RELISH
1/3 cup dark rum (75 mL)
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots (50 mL)
Grated rind of 1 orange
3 cups fresh or frozen cranberries (750 mL)
1 cup granulated sugar (250 mL)
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper (2 mL)
1. Combine rum, shallots and orange rind in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat and simmer for a few minutes until rum has reduced and mixture is a syrupy glaze.
2. Add cranberries and sugar. Stirring constantly, continue to cook until cranberries pop and sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and stir in pepper.
3. Process for 10 minutes for half-pint (250 mL) jars and 15 minutes for pint (500 mL) jars as directed below, or store in refrigerator up to 3 weeks.
Makes 2 cups (500 mL)
I had small amount of relish leftover after canning the rest. I made a turkey sandwich on rosemary bread with sharp cheddar cheese and just pressed it in a hot pan with melted butter for a few minutes. It made an incredible sandwich. Now I know how to use up that leftover holiday turkey!