Monday, 12 October 2009

Bottling Green Sunshine

My sister has given me 11 lbs of green tomatoes - a casualty of our deeply rubbish and very grey summer here in the North West. However, all is not lost because green tomatoes make the most wonderful chutney! So am chopping and stirring madly to turn it all into green sunshine in a jar. If you have some tomatoes of your own that haven't quite ripened - have a go at this recipe:

4lbs green tomatoes, 2lbs cooking apples, 1/2 lb onions, 3 garlic cloves, 1lb sultanas, 2 oz ginger, 2 tsp mustard seeds, 1/2 tsp crushed chillis, 2lbs demerara sugar, 1 tbsp salt, 1 & 1/2 pints vinegar.

Heat a frying pan and add mustard seeds to toast gently for 1 minute. Transfer to a pestle & mortar and crush lightly. Chop tomatoes, onions and apples roughly. Crush garlic with salt and grate ginger. Put everything into a big preserving pan and slowly bring to simmering point. Leave to cook gently for 3 hours - stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. It will become thick and soft. Don't let it completely dry out - it will be ready when you can draw a spoon through the mixture and it leaves a clear channel with no vinegar in it. Boil the kettle and pour hot water into your jars to sterilise. Upend, pouring out the water and put into a low oven to dry out. Pot up your chutney and seal. Put away for 1 month before eating. Will keep for a year unopened.

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