i love making preserved things and got really into it last summer when i was off work at this time of year with way too much time on my hands. it's so very thrifty and satisfying. and now is the absolute season to buy a box of on the turn fruit or vegetables from the market, and jar them up with spices and tart vinegar and bags of sugar, to last you through the grizzly winter. you can be pretty adventurous.
make sure you start stashing away used jars in order to fill them with the summer's delights. so last week i made a tomato chutney. my lover and i tested it out on saturday morning in sandwiches with the papers: lathered on standard bread with crispy fried bacon and handful of spinach. i must concede it's just perfect: sweet from the sugar and plum tomatoes; full of aromatic preserving spices; and all together juicy and delicious. the flavour is somewhere between a brown sauce and a classic ketchup. making a batch is a great way to spend a sunday afternoon too.
TOMATO CHUTNEY makes 6 or 7 jars. i'm going to make it again to double check all the times and measurements, but this is what i've got so far.
1 pint of malt vinegar
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp smooth Dijon mustard
salt & pepper
800g brown sugar
dice onions and sweat in a pan with 3 tbsp of the vinegar for a few minutes. Chop tomatoes into 12 pieces each, roughly chop the chillis complete with seeds, and add both to pot. Sweat with spices and mustard and salt and pepper for one hour.
Now add the sugar and vinegar and simmer on a very low heat for 2 ½ to 3 hours.
Disinfect the jars that you are using by pouring boiling water pouring in to each jar, with a spoon in each to dissipate the heat. Now pour out the water and ladle the chutney into each jar. Seal immediatelyand leave to cool.
the next condiment thing i make is going to be ketchup inspired by jamie oliver... so watch out!