This summer we planted a couple of bog-standard tomato plants, initially as a summer garden project for the kids, but which inevitably ended up as our project instead. We diligently watered, pruned and propped up our two plants and were rewarded with a pretty decent crop of tomatoes (despite our middle child’s propensity for accurately shooting his football at both plants!)
But what to do with the fruits of our labour (because yes, tomatoes are a fruit)? Well, we were able to enjoy a few Tomato & Mozzarella Salads before *whomp!* Autumn roared in with a distinct cooling of temperature, much rain and wind. Now what??
Chutney is one of my favourite condiments. It turns an ordinary cheese sandwich into a gourmet delight. Add a spoonful to the side of your plate when dishing up a plate of Welsh Rarebit – delish! It keeps for months, so make some now, package it nicely with a fancy label and give a jar of it for Christmas to someone who will appreciate it (Note: if giving someone a jar of newly made chutney, do tell them not to open it right away…no-one enjoys a vinegar-rich mouthful!)
So, I got going making a batch of tomato chutney. The recipe below is based on the BBC’s Good Food magazine recipe for Autumn Tomato Chutney. I left out the green pepper (mostly because I simply cannot eat peppers) and I did not bother to peel the tomatoes, but otherwise my version stuck to the original recipe.
I tend to re-use jars when making jam, chutney and the like. If doing so, make sure that the lid is still good (i.e., you did not have to whack it with a heavy object or punch a hole in it to open it). Also make sure that both lid and jar have been thoroughly cleaned and sterilized before you fill it with the hot chutney/jam or preserves. If you don’t follow these two rules, mould will develop and ruin your hard work!
Ingredients: (made 12 medium-sized jam jars of chutney)
- 1kg ripe tomatoes, peeled and chopped
- 750g cooking apples, peeled, cored and chopped
- 375g light muscovado sugar
- 250g onions, chopped
- 250g raisins
- (1 green pepper, deseeded and chopped)
- 2 tsp salt ½ tsp ground ginger
- 350ml cider vinegar
1. Put all the ingredients into a large pan and bring to the boil over a medium heat. Stir occasionally until the sugar has dissolved. Boil the mixture, uncovered, for about 45-50 mins until the fruit is tender and thickened. Cool, then transfer the mixture to a sterilised jar and seal.