Thursday, 24 October 2013

Spice it up

Spicy Apple Chutney
With the revival of interest in growing garden produce, there’s always the question of what to do with seasonal gluts of fruit and vegetables. Grandma had lots of recipes which show what did in her day when there was a surplus. She often made chutneys and pickles to last through the winter as a perfect side dish with hot and cold dishes.

So, when I was given a bag of ‘fallen’ apples by Pam and Tricia at the fabulous Cafe Med on Doncaster's famous Indoor Market, I went back to Grandma’s Apple Chutney recipe. I always remember that Grandma served this spicy accompaniment with pork pies and cold meats at Christmas.
‘Fallen’ apples
2 lb/approx 1 kg apples
1 ½ lb/675g onions
1 lb/450g dried apricots
1 lb/450g sultanas
1 lb/450g demerera sugar
2 oz/50g garlic
1 tbsp salt
2 tbsps ground ginger
1 tsp mustard seed
1 quart/ 1150ml vinegar

Chop up the apples, onions and apricots. Add the other ingredients and mix together. Place in a large pan and bring to the boil. Simmer for about 1½ hours, stirring until the ingredients are tender. Allow to cool. Spoon into clean jars and cover.”
Simmer the ingredients
Grandma’s tips :
Grandma chopped the fruit and onions finely or even put them through a mincer since she preferred the final consistency of her chutney to be thick and smooth.
To test if the chutney was ready, she would draw a wooden spoon across the bottom of the pan. If it’s ready, the chutney must not flow back into the gap left behind by the spoon. If not, then check every 5 minutes or so until the gap is clear.  She also said that Chutney needs to cool slowly so the spices infuse and flavour the fruit. You can add more ginger and other spices such as mustard seed, coriander or cumin to make it even spicier.

A gift of homemade Chutney
There are more of Grandma’s recipes for Chutneys and Pickles in her book or e book Grandma Abson's Traditional Baking – it’s a perfect gift. You could even make some Chutney and pot it up with decorative ribbon as a homemade present for friends and family! 


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  2. Lovely food blog! Where did you get the "Made With Love" canning jars? I would like to find something like that.

  3. Hi the jars are from Cook N Dine in Doncaster. Thanks for your kind comments.