Chutney recipes of all fruits and flavours make a plate of cold meats sing, bring life to a plain cheese sandwich, enliven a cold pie. Coming from the Indian tradition of a spiced fruit of vegetable accompaniment, the colonial British took it home and made it their own, using it as a way of preserving fruit and vegetables and bringing a little variety to the table.
You can make chutney with green tomatoes, plums, mangos, apples, onions, courgettes, and any combinations you can think of; the list goes on and on. The common factor is that they are cooked up with vinegar, sugar and some sort of spice to preserve them and add flavour. If you’ve never made chutney before start off with this easy green tomato chutney recipe and then start inventing your own chutneys.
Recipe for Green Tomato Chutney
1 kg / 2.2lbs green tomatoes
3 medium apples
400g / 1lb shallots or onions
125 g / 4oz raisins
2cm / 1inch root ginger
3 red chillies
500g / 1.1lb soft brown sugar
500ml / 2 cups malt vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
Wash your green tomatoes and get rid of any bruised or bad bits.
Peel and lightly crush the ginger with a rolling pin, so it is still in one piece but a bit squashed. Wash the chillies. Tie the ginger and chillies in a muslin bag, so that you can easily remove them after cooking the chutney.
Peel the onions and quarter and core the apples.
Chop or process the apples, onions and green tomatoes so that they are well chopped up but not mushy. You want a chunky texture to your chutney.
Use a large heavy based pan. Put the chopped vegetables in with the vinegar, sugar and raisins and stir together. Add the bag with the ginger and chilli. Bring the whole pot to the boil, stirring often to make sure the sugar dissolves and doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
When it comes to the boil, turn the heat down to a low simmer. Cook for 1-2 hours, stirring from time to time. The chutney is ready when it is soft and jam-like and there is no excess vinegar liquid left. Discard the ginger and chillies.
Spoon the chutney into warm sterilized jars and seal tightly.
Other great chutney combinations:
Plum, apple and tomato chutney
Mango chutney spiced with mustard seeds and chilli
Apple and onion chutney with coriander and mixed spice
Feel like spicing up your evening? Get some authentic Indian food at Chutney restaurant in Nottingham.