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Sunday, 23 October 2011

Intermission 2: Green Tomato Chutney

This was adapted from the recipe I found on Margeland [What a great name for a website!]
This here's everything you need
  • 1kg green tomatoes
  • 2 medium size apples
  • 500g soft brown sugar
  • 500ml malt vinegar (or about 3/4 of a pint)
  • [I used half malt vinegar & have wine vinegar, so I added about 2 teaspoons of malt extract, to give it the correct flavour] 
    Malt syrup
  • 2cm of root ginger [I used pre-grated ginger, about 2 teaspoons]
  • 3 red chilis (you can use more if you like things hot!) [I used 1 teaspoon of dry chillis]
  • 125g raisins
  • 300g shallots [I used a medium sized onion]
  • 1 tsp salt
  • [I added the juice on one lemon and a teaspoon each of Cinnamon, Corriander, Cloves, Nutmeg, Allspice and powdered ginger]
  1. Wash the green tomatoes well.  If you see any with blossom end rot (like a nasty bruise), or any yukky bits then chuck them out.
  2. Prepare the chilis (carefully!) and set them aside.  I used chilis from the garden that I had frozen so I didn’t need to wash them again.  I also kept the chilis whole. [I used a teaspoon of dried chillies]
  3. Peel the ginger using a sharp knife.  They are so knobbly it is too much of a faff to use a peeler! Give the ginger a light bash with a rolling pin.  You want to squash it a bit without breaking it into pieces.  Set aside [I used 2 teaspoons of pre-grated ginger, much easier]
  4. Take the green tomatoes, shallots, and apples and bung them in a food processor.  You want things nicely chopped but not mushy.  If you are a tough guy (or don’t have a food processor) you can chop things with a good sharp knife, but bear in mind this will take a while. [I don't have a food processor, so I chopped by hand]
  5. All the veg and fruit chopped up
    In a large, deep cooking pot place the chopped items along with the vinegar, sugar, raisins (I like to leave them whole for this recipe), and salt.  Give it all a mix with a wooden spoon.
  6. Pouring the vinegar over the top
    1. Add the chilis and ginger and stir again.  Put the heat on and bring the chutney to the boil.  You will need to keep stirring to make sure the sugar dissolves and the bottom of the pot doesn’t catch.  When stirring make sure you don’t break the chilis or you will have chili seeds all over the chutney!  If you have one of those tea cage things you can use that to put the chili and ginger in if you wish.
    2. After stirring a good few times and turning on the stove
      1. Once at a good boiling stage turn the light right down to a simmer.   And this is where patience comes in handy.  You will need to simmer the chutney for ages, at least an hour, if not more.  Also you will need to stir the chutney from time to time. 
        Here's what it looks like after a half an hour simmering away
      2. One thing you can do whilst waiting for the chutney to simmer is to prepare the chutney jars.  Being resourceful you can use old coffee, jam, or pickle jars.  You MUST clean the jars and lids until scrupulously clean in very hot water.  Whilst the jars are still wet microwave them for 2 minutes on high.
      3. Clean jars awaiting chutney and the timer
        1. Once the chutney has attained a jam like consistency it is done.  Take out the chilis and ginger (or just remove the tea cage thing) and discard.  [If you use the pre-grated ginger and dried chillies ignor this step]
        2. This is what it looks like after cooking for an hour, mine was still a bit too wet, so I had to cook it another 30 minutes
        3. Carefully spoon the chutney into the sterilized jars.  It is a good idea to make sure the jars are warmed too so as not to crack when the hot chutney goes in!  You want to pack the chutney in so there are no air bubbles.  Create a seal over the surface of the chutney with a bit of folded clingfilm. Put the lids on tightly.   Leave the jars to cool thoroughly.  Once opened keep the chutney in the fridge.
        4. Chutney all done and looking fine

          Serve in a nice cheese sandwich, or as a relish with a lovely meat dinner.

          Before I forget this week I started soaking the fruit for the Christmas Cake

          To make one, check out the archive for recipe:
          Soaking the fruit in anticipation for the Xmas cake

          Certainly link and make suggestions to anyone you think would like to see these. Just please do not reprint as your own work.

          Best Wishes,
          Gabrielle Elliot

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