Believe it or not, there’s more to cranberries than cranberry sauce in a can. Ming Tsai, chef and owner of Ming East-West in Wellesley, Mass., and the host of the PBS cooking show "Simply Ming," shares a cran-tastic menu that will leave your mouth watering. Here are the recipes.
Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney
Makes 4 cups
2 red onions, cut into 1/2-inch dice2 tablespoons minced lemongrass, white part only2 cups dried cranberries, such as Craisins, chopped1/2 cup sugar2 cups naturally brewed rice vinegarGrapeseed or canola oil for cookingKosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a sauté pan coated lightly with oil over high heat, sauté the onions and lemongrass until soft, about 5 minutes. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper and check for flavor. Add cranberries and sugar and deglaze with naturally brewed rice vinegar. Reduce by 75 percent, or until liquid is absorbed. Check again for seasoning. When cool, transfer to a container, cover, and store in fridge for up to two weeks.
Sweet and Sour Pork Fried Rice
3 eggs, beaten1 pound ground pork1 bunch scallions sliced, white and green part separated6 cups cooked long grain rice, preferably day old so it’s nice and dry (In a rush, place cooked rice on a sheet tray and place in freezer to cool and dry.)1 cup Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney, plus 2 tablespoons for garnish1 tablespoon naturally brewed soy sauce Grapeseed or canola oil for cooking Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
In a wok (preferably non-stick) or sauté pan coated well with oil over high heat, add eggs (they should puff up immediately), stir quickly and transfer to a plate lined with paper towels. Place the wok back over high heat and add the pork. Break up and cook until browned, then add the scallion whites and mix. Add the rice, Sweet and Sour Cranbery Chutney, naturally brewed soy sauce, and the eggs. Season with kosher salt and freshly gound black pepper and check for flavor. Serve in a large bowl and garnish with scallion greens and additional Sweet and Sour Cranberry Chutney.
Sweet & Sour Cranberry Grilled Chicken with Sweet Potato-Chive Puree
4 boneless chicken breasts, skin on2 large sweet potatoes, wrapped in foil and baked through in oven3 tablespoons butter, cut into chunks, softened3 tablespoons chopped chives3/4 cup Sweet & Sour Cranberry ChutneyKosher salt and freshly ground black pepperCooking spray
Prepare a clean, hot grill, sprayed slick. Season the chicken breasts on both sides with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Grill until cooked through, about 5 minutes a side. Let chicken rest for 3 to 5 minutes before slicing on bias. Meanwhile, scoop out hot potatoes and, using a strong whisk, mix with butter and chives. Season with kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. To serve, place a small mound of sweet potato puree on plate, top with sliced chicken, and garnish with generous amount of Sweet & Sour Cranberry Chutney.
2 tablespoons unsalted butter3 baking apples, (like McIntosh), peeled, thinly sliced, held in acidulated water1 cup fresh cranberries 1/2 cup brown sugar1/4 cup rum (optional)1 quart vanilla ice cream, homemade or premium store-bought
In a large saute pan over medium-high heat, melt butter. Add drained apples, cranberries, and brown sugar. Stir to dissolve sugar and saute until softened. Flambe with rum — this is optional but very tasty. Scoop ice cream into a bowl and top with a generous amount of apple-cranberry topping.