Perhaps the most ridiculous of all Thanksgiving culinary traditions is cranberry “sauce”. The ribbed edges from the tin can are not for your pleasure. To me, spending all day cooking a whole turkey, to varying degrees of success, and then opening a can of “sauce”, slicing it (slicing sauce?) and putting it on top of it is like spending all day cleaning your house and then hanging those little pine-y tree scenters all over the place.
The basic cranberry sauce, even homemade, is not something I particularly like. It is too sweet/tart. However, with a little twist, this cranberry mostarda pushes the cranberry out of novelty status to the point where I really think that it would be edible on multiple dates during the year. It tastes like actual food and not like a dare. The mustard seeds and powder provide a useful punch to counter the tartness of the cranberries. They also steer the flavor in a decidedly savory direction.
As I think through the Thanksgiving Challenge, I wanted a vegetarian option. The mostarda, itself, is vegetarian which isn’t true of the canned version (gelatin). It is a natural partner to the turkey (and other roasted meats) but, I think that it would be really good paired with goat cheese.
Adapted from recipe from Babbo Ristorante
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 pound fresh cranberries
- 2 tablespoons Colman’s dry mustard
- 1 teaspoon white wine
- 1 tablespoon black mustard seeds
- Kosher salt
Step one: Combine sugar, cranberries, and one cup of water. Bring a boil, lower heat and simmer for 10 minutes.
Step two: While the cranberries cook, combine the remaining ingredients and whisk.
Step three: Add mustard mixture to the cranberries and cook for 15 minutes over high heat until thickened and syrupy.
Makes a pint and keeps around a week refrigerated.