As I pulled the bowl of this Lemon Cranberry Carrot Relish from the fridge, I wondered if anyone ever tries any of the suggestions in my “Put on Your TO COOK IS TO CREATE Thinking Cap” section of my blogs. For this relish adaptation was one of my suggestions in the recipe for Zesty No Cook Carrot Relish. As I sat enjoying the relish with cheese and crackers, I decided I must share this recipe to inspire you TO COOK IS TO CREATE, except there’s no cooking in this recipe, unless you count the few seconds to toast nuts!
The original Zesty No Cook Carrot Relish used regular sugar and a whole lemon and this adaption uses a whole lemon, too, but brown sugar, instead, with added cranberries and nuts. This relish is best made a day ahead and only gets better the next day, so this relish is an easy make ahead fix for your next cheese tray.
During this pandemic, I have definitely started looking forward to happy hour days filled with a nice bottle of wine and an assortment of cheese. Many stores have small cheese cuttings that you can find, my store calls them “remnants”, so I always feel like I’m saving food. We used them to have a cheese tasting one night writing down the flavor profiles just like wine. It was a fun stay at home date night. This relish has made its appearance on quite a few cheese boards and I hope it will find a place on yours.
Put on Your TO COOK IS TO CREATE Thinking Cap: No lemon? Use an orange. No dried cranberries? Use raisins or any other dried fruit. Want to up the flavor? Soak the dried fruit in rum or brandy before using or add some cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, or cloves. Have a favorite nut? Use more of it or all of it. This relish is perfect for a meat and cheese tray, but how else could you enjoy it? I love it on a ham or a grilled brie and spinach sandwich! Big lemon cranberry fan? Make Lemon Cranberry Rice Fritters.
FOOD FUN: A food fun fact that you may not know is that I ALWAYS have carrots in my fridge. Why do you ask? I have a big carrot lover in the family! His name is Fred. He loves to take selfies, is a Southern gentleman, and even has his own Instagram page, @fredrickdonkey