The holiday of Pesach (AKA Passover) is upon us. This year I decided to take on the seder classic, charoset. I know I am a little late for a seder recipe, but this will work great for the second days of Passover or really any time during the year. Charoset is a paste traditionally made from grated apples, sweet red wine, and nuts. It is designed to take the bite out of your maror (AKA bitter herb/horseradish). Every family has its own traditions when comes to the addition of spices, sweeteners, and other fruits such as dates or raisins. For my traditional charoset, I add honey, ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
A Twist on Tradition
For this recipe I wanted to put a twist on traditional charoset, and at the same time expand its function. I was perusing the produce at my provisions provider, and I came across two tropical tastes that I could not pass up. Mangos are one of my favorite fruits and the produce store had a sale on them if you bought a case. I also came across kumquats, the tiny little citrus that I just cannot resist. This lead me down a path to chutney. According Merriam-Webster.com chutney is defined as a thick sauce of Indian origin that contains fruits, vinegar, sugar, and spices and is used as a condiment. Many chutneys contain, apples, mangos, and nuts. The leap from charoset to chutney is but a small step.
The great thing about this recipe is you can use the charoset/chutney to dip your maror in or use it as a condiment or a sauce. In this recipe I use it as a sauce for my seder night chicken. Many hav e the custom that meat or fowl served at the seder must be served in a liquid. The reason for this is so that it should not appear that we are trying to fulfill the commandment of eating the korban Pesach (Paschal lamb sacrifice) in the absence of the Temple. The korban Pesach was served dry roasted. The chutney would also make a great addition to your holiday brisket or even spread on matzo.
What is your favorite Passover dish? Let us know in the comments. And don’t forget to check out some of our other Passover recipes:
- 1 Large Yellow Onion Peeled and sliced
- 3 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 tbsp Salt
- 3 Large Mangos Peeled and diced
- 3 Large Apples Peeled, cored, and diced
- 12 Kumquats Divided
- 1 tbsp Nutmeg
- 1 tbsp Cinnamon
- 1 tbsp Ground Ginger
- 1 tsp Black Pepper or Red Pepper Flake (if you like it spicy)
- 1½ Cup Orange Juice Reserve ½ cup for cooking the chicken
- 1 Cup Sweet White Wine
- ¼ Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
- ¼ Cup Honey
- ¼ Cup Ground Nuts
- 1 Package 4 Chicken Leg Quarters or 8-Peice Cut Up
Add the oil, onions, and salt to large sauce pot and place over medium heat. Sautee until the onion starts to brown.
Slice half the kumquats into thin slices. In a mixing bowl combine the apples, mango, and kumquats. Add the cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and black (or red) pepper and stir to combine.
Add the mango, apple, kumquat mixture to the pot with the onions. Add 1 cup of the orange juice, all of the wine, apple cider vinegar, and honey and stir to combine.
Turn the heat down to low and reduce the mixture to a chunky, jam-like consistency is achieved. Stir in the ground nuts. If you are using this as your charoset, you can stop here.
Pour the sauce into a baking dish and add the chicken. Slice the remainder of the kumquats and top the chicken with them. If the chutney looks dry add a ½ cup of orange juice to the pan.
Cover the pan tightly with foil and bake the chicken at 350°F for an hour. Then turn the oven up to 425°F and uncover the chicken. Continue cooking until the the chicken skin begins to brown and serve.