Plastic Challenge 2017
July 19, 2017 – 11:17 am | 4 Comments

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June 2017 was officially the Marine Conservation Society’s  ‘Plastic Challenge’ month.
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Home » Gluten Free, Recipes, Snacks / Side Dishes, Vegan

Adventures in Chutney

Submitted by on September 1, 2011 – 10:20 amNo Comment

Making your own chutney may seem a little daunting, but once you have a go you’ll find it’s easy and fun to do. Be warned though, if you are anything like me and love seeing your homemade produce lined up in your cupboard, you may find it strangely addictive! Here’s what you’ll need…

Basic Equipment

  • A saucepan – a nice big stainless steel or enamel one is what you need (other metals like copper and aluminium may react with the vinegar). You can get pans specifically designed for making preserves but you certainly don’t need one of these- just make sure the pan you use is plenty big enough.
  • Jars – Use glass jars which can be sealed. Old jam jars are fine provided they have a plastic coating inside the lid rather than bare metal.
  • A knife and chopping board for preparing all your lovely fruit and veg.
  • A ladle and long-handled wooden spoon, and possibly a wide-necked funnel for getting your chutney into the jars with minimal mess.
  • Star Ingredients

  • Vinegar – The best types for chutney are malt vinegar (often distilled or clear is used, rather than the brown type), cider vinegar and white wine vinegar.
  • Sugar – You can use white granulated, muscovado, demerara or a combination of sugars, depending on the flavour you want to achieve.
  • Fruit and veg – some of the most common choices are apples, pear, plum, tomato and courgette. These form the base of the chutney, and dried fruit like raisins are often used as well for added texture and sweetness.
  • Onions and garlic – In addition to the main fruit and veg above, onions and sometimes garlic are staples to many chutneys.
  • Spices – I like to put plenty in, but this is purely up to your personal taste. Some good all-rounders are chilli, ginger, cumin and mustard seeds.
  • Tips for the perfect chutney

  • Chop your main ingredients into similar sized chunks so that they cook evenly
  • Simmer your chutney until the fruit and veg is soft and the mixture has thickened- a good test is to make a line in the mixture with your spoon, and if it doesn’t immediately fill with liquid and disappear, it’s good to go.
  • Wash your jars thoroughly then sterilise them by putting them in the oven at a very low temperature until they are dry; this will help keep your chutney from going off once it’s sealed in the jar.
  • When putting the chutney into jars make sure any large air pockets are pushed out of the chutney (e.g. with a wooden spoon) as this will help to increase its storage life.
  • Leave the chutney for a couple of months before opening, during which time the vinegar flavour will soften and the chutney will mellow and mature.
  • The chutney maker’s Suma shopping list…
    KJ311 Biona cider vinegar
    LJ090 Suma Fairtrade golden granulated sugar
    DR056 organic sultanas
    HE155 Suma pickling spice
    HE143 ground cumin

    Try making chutneys with different vinegars and fruits. Other tasty ideas are mango and apple, spiced courgette, tomato and sultana – the list goes on. Experiment and see for yourself!

    Can’t wait to give it a go? Have a look at our simple apple chutney recipe which makes a great starting point!

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