Make Ahead

Cranberry Caramelized Red Onion Jam

November  7, 2009
0 Ratings
Author Notes

My mother makes the best Thanksgiving dinner (I know, yours does too) and that includes her cranberry sauce, which she properly molds in empty black bean cans for a decidedly old school look. Her recipe is simple, cranberries, water, sugar, and lemon zest. To say the least, I am intimidated by the whole Thanksgiving cooking feat and with the exception of baking the pies and making side dishes, I have not really assisted my mom in the kitchen for this holdiay. With this contest in my mind (which I have entered to late into) and Thanksgiving creeping up, I wanted to create a cranberry recipe that would complement my family's table but also be a new and refreshing taste. I am inclined to serve this with a dollop of cream fraiche on top or spread on toasted bread with a healthy smear of goat cheese or baked up with goat cheese much like a pizza and served at room temperature. I was also at a loss of what to call this. It is not really a chutney, not a sauce, not a compote, jam seemed to sum it up. —testkitchenette

  • Makes 2 cups (to serve about 4-5 people)
  • Preparing the Figs, Dates, and Onions
  • 1 cup dried pitted dates
  • 1 cup dried figs
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large red onion, peeled, halved, and sliced into thin half moons
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • Finishing the Cranberry Jam
  • 2 cups fresh cranberries, washed and picked over
  • soak water from figs and dates
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Splash freshly squeezed lemon juice
In This Recipe
  1. Preparing the Figs, Dates, and Onions
  2. Bring water to a boil and remove. from heat. Put the figs and dates into the water and let rest for 20 minutes. In a medium skillet heat olive oil over medium heat and add the onions. Stir and cook until softened, add salt. Add wine, bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover partially, and cook onions until caramelized and sweet, adjusting seasoning if necessary. Your onions should be a red wine tinged soft tangled mess when you are done. Set aside.
  1. Finishing the Cranberry Jam
  2. In a large saucepan, add in soak water from figs and dates along with the cranberries and lemon zest. Bring to a boil and when the cranberries start to pop (about 8 minutes) and mixture bubbles, take off the heat. Strain and reserve almost all of the liquid (some stays with the fruit) and pulse in a food processor until chunky. Pour back into the saucepan and add in the honey and caramelized onions. Adjust for seasoning with salt and honey. You may need to add in a bit of the strained cranberry/fig/date liquid depending on how saucy you like your sauce. I like mine pretty chunky without any extra liquid. Serve at room temperature.

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1 Review

Meaney C. November 27, 2009
Love this on bruschetta with goat cheese!