Lior’s Spiced Cranberry Chutney With Apricots and Pecans

Lior Lev Sercarz’s Spiced Cranberry Chutney With Apricots and Pecans
Serves 6 to 8

Prepare chutney ahead of time so flavors can develop. Remember this is not a treacly sauce. It relies only on dried fruit and juices for sweetness. Leftovers make a great condiment for lamb, chicken thighs, or goat cheese or as a yogurt topping.

A couple of notes about the sauce: if you can’t find ground fennel, finely crush fennel seeds with a heavy-bottomed saucepan (or mince with a sharp chef’s knife). You can also substitute an equal amount of ground star anise for the fennel. And if you’re looking for a shortcut, Lior gives permission to substitute 1 1/2 teaspoons Pumpkin Pie Spice or Apple Pie Spice blend (or even curry powder or garam masala for the more adventurous) for all of the spices.

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon each: ground fennel and ground cardamom
1/8 teaspoon each: ground cloves and ground ginger
Pinch cayenne pepper
1/2 cup apple cider
1/4 cup pomegranate juice
1 bag (12 ounces) fresh or frozen cranberries
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/4 cup dried apricots, cut into small dice
1/4 cup toasted pecans, chopped coarse
2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest

Mix spices; bring cider, pomegranate juice, and spice blend to a boil in a large saucepan. Add cranberries and return to a boil, cooking until some of the cranberries just start to pop, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

Meanwhile, mix dried cranberries, apricots, pecans, and orange zest in a medium bowl. Add cooked cranberries to the dried fruits; toss gently to coat. Cool and refrigerate until ready to use (Can be covered and refrigerated up to 5 days.)

Make sure to squirrel away some of the cranberry sauce to dollop on goat cheese-topped toasted baguette or crackers.

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