Cranberry Jalapeño Cream Cheese Dip

Cranberry Jalapeño Cream Cheese Dip 

I can't believe it's already December! This year has flown by so fast...but I'm excited because I love cold weather, Christmas lights, and comforting food. I'm looking forward to seeing how Christmas is celebrated here in Hong Kong. The decorations have already started to go up, and I can tell how festive it's going to be around here.

Growing up, my family has always celebrated Thanksgiving and Christmas with a glorious prime rib in lieu of turkey. The only time I ever had turkey, cranberry sauce, and stuffing was at Friendsgiving! I've always been a huge fan of cranberries: dried, in sweets, sauces, on a good turkey sandwich, and especially the canned cranberry sauce lol. But I never really got to enjoy cranberry sauce at Christmas dinner. So I really wanted to come up with a fun appetizer that involved deliciously tangy cranberries. This month's @shopmissbish #MISSDISH recipe is unexpectedly tasty. A blend of fresh cranberries, lemon juice, sugar, jalapeño, green onions, cumin, and cilantro is served over softened cream cheese...yes a block of cream cheese! Honestly, what's better than a good dip? All you've gotta do is throw all the ingredients together, let it macerate a bit in the fridge, and pulse it in a blender. The result is a vibrant cranberry relish that is perfectly sweet, tangy, earthy, and with a slight spicy kick. This dip is festive, flavorful, easy on the wallet, and perfect for potlucks. Let's get cookin!  

What You Need:

  • 12 oz fresh cranberries
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 4-5 green onions, chopped
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and diced
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 2 - 8 oz packages of cream cheese
  • crackers for serving!

What To Do:

  • The cranberry relish needs to macerate for a few hours. As usual, the longer the better! 3-4 hours minimum is ideal. The cranberry relish is served over softened cream cheese, so take the cream cheese out of the fridge about 30 minutes before serving.
  • For the relish: wash and dry the fresh cranberries. Roughly chop or pulse the cranberries in a blender. The relish turns out best if you pulse it a bit in a blender, but in a pinch, you can definitely chop up the cranberries.
  • Wash, seed, and dice 1 jalapeño. 
  • Mix together the cranberries, diced jalapeño, chopped cilantro, chopped green onion, juice of one lemon, 1/2 tsp cumin, 1 cup sugar, and 1/8 tsp salt. Stir to make sure all the ingredients are incorporated, and throw it in a covered container in the fridge for a few hours to let it get all sexy. 
  • After a few hours, the cranberries will have macerated, or softened by soaking in liquid. Stir it up a bit and give it a taste. Adjust to your liking, whether it be a bit more lemon juice or salt. 
  • Serve over softened cream cheese with your favorite crackers. 

I love how vibrant the cranberries are! This is a really nice dip to bring to any holiday party. The mix of the tangy berries and lemon juice are balanced out by the sugar. The jalapeño and herbs add a nice punch, and the cumin brings plays off the lemon and brings some nice nutty, earthiness to the relish. It's really delicious when spread with cream cheese over a crisp little cracker :) Hope you're having a great holiday season! If you've tried any dishes from the blog, let me know! I love to hear from you :)