Cranberry Mayo

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Back in the days when I catered, I was often asked to do buffets of heavy hors d’oeuvres for parties. Many hosts don’t want to deal with utensils, and so finger foods are the easiest and cleanest way to go. And, they’re some of my favorite foods to make, as well.

If there were men at the parties, I often suggested the inclusion of hearty sandwiches; men usually need more than finger foods to satisfy them. So the sandwiches I made usually were made with my home-made buns, grilled tenderloin or freshly smoked turkey, a good cheese, and always a fun condiment or two. This was always the case during the holidays, with so many fun flavors to work with.

For example, it’s so easy to turn a simple mustard into a cranberry mustard with the simple addition of cranberry sauce, compote, or chutney. Or, turn a plain mayonnaise into an apple-pear mayo with the addition of apple pear butter. How easy is that? A fun condiment just turns a relatively plain sandwich into something way more delicious and festive.

With it being fall and the holidays approaching, I thought I’d go ahead and whip up a condiment to have around just in case of company stopping by, or, to enjoy myself! This would be great with leftover turkey sandwiches after Thanksgiving…

I had just bought some cranberries, so here’s what I did:

Cranberry Mayo

1 – 12 ounce package cranberries
2 tablespoons maple syrup
3 tablespoons water
Few drops orange oil (optional)
1 stick butter
1 1/2 cups good mayonnaise
2 – 4 teaspoons Dijon mustard

Sort through the cranberries when you rinse them in a colander and pick out and toss any that are mushy.

rinsed and sorted cranberries

Then place them in a small saucepan. Add the maple syrup, water, and orange oil to the cranberries, and bring to a boil. Cover, then cook at the lowest possible temperature for about 2-3 minutes. The cranberries should have burst and there should not be any more liquid in the saucepan.
Add the stick of butter to the saucepan and let it melt.

butter melting into the cranberries

Whisk the melted butter into the cranberry mixture and set aside to cool completely.
When it’s cooled down, whisk in the mayonnaise and mustard into the cranberry butter mixture until smooth. Taste to see if you like it. You can always add more mustard, or even a bit of horseradish for some extra zing! Store in a plastic container in the refrigerator.

This mayo would go well with beef, ham, chicken, and turkey sandwiches! If you’re letting people make up their own sandwiches, put the cranberry in a pretty bowl with a spreader. It’s so pretty!

Note: a half recipe will work just as well.

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