Welcome to our new food series called Eat It Up, where we share the kitchen gadgets and foods that we can’t cook without.
Barbecue, campfire veggies, and s’mores feel like a distant memory the colder it gets. You might find yourself missing that charred, smoky taste that only a fire can deliver. In those dark, lonely moments, reach for the Bernzomatic TS4000 Torch ($38), which allows you to safely blast direct heat to foods without dealing with kindling. Use it to create melty marshmallows for indoor s’mores or finally get around to making crème brûlée. It toasts up meringue on top of pies or reheats little appetizer bits too. You also can also employ it to quickly sear meat and fish or char veggies.
But our favorite and unexpected way to use this torch is to make a cranberry chutney, which we think can unite our divided country of those who prefer the fresh, homemade cranberry sauce and those who love the canned version (that pops out as a jiggly log). Queens-based pastry chef Thiago Silva shared his recipe for charred cranberry chutney with us, and it’s a game changer. It has the sweetness of the can but doesn’t sacrifice the necessary tartness of fresh sauce.
What makes this take on cranberry sauce so satisfying is the texture. “Combining the Bernzomatic charred cranberries with the dried cranberries gives the dish an interesting texture,” Silve told Brit + Co during a demo of the torch. “Cranberry sauce is usually not very exciting from a flavor or texture standpoint. So the mix of cranberries adds excitement and variety to a classic recipe. I also love the visual cues that the charred cranberries provide.” Here’s how to make the charred cranberry chutney, which will be a nice upgrade to your basic cranberry sauce this Thanksgiving.
Charred Cranberry Chutney Recipe
Directions:1. Char cranberries in a sheet pan with a culinary-grade blow torch like the TS4000 Bernzomatic torch.
2. Place a stainless steel pan over medium-high heat. Add sugar once hot to make a dry caramel.
3. Once a golden color is obtained, lower heat and add charred cranberries slowly (careful with steam). Add the dried cranberries and orange zest.
4. Reduce to a nice glaze consistency.
5. Then add orange juice, spices, and vinegar, and reduce for 2 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.
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(Recipe via Tiago Silva/ Bernzomatic; photos via Bernzomatic and Gabi Conti/Brit + Co)
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