Once again, my Dad’s wonderful apple trees have provided him with buckets of fruit that he has absolutely no interest in cooking (or, indeed eating – I mean, how many apples can one man possibly eat?). He arrived bearing massive bags of fruit (we won’t go into the missing one – my cousin Moon, visiting from Slovakia, got the blame, but he was far too busy trying to smuggle sausages out of the country, so the ‘case of the missing apples’ has now settled happily into family folklore) so I thought I’d have a go at some chutney.
This chutney is quite delicately flavoured and doesn’t contain any onions. It’s not too vinegary (the malt vinegar gives a nice rounded taste) and the fruity taste makes it an ideal accompaniment to both cheese, and roasted meats. It’s almost more of a posh apple sauce, really.
You will need:
1.5 – 1.75kg apples
300ml malt vinegar
Large handful of mint
1 tablespoon chopped thyme
I’m not a massive fan of raisins in this chutney, but add 50g if you fancy it.
This amount makes about three jars, but if you stick to the general ratios above, you can multiply the recipe up or down as appropriate (and use any fruit or veg you fancy… pears, pumpkin, onions…).
To make the chutney:
Basically, just peel, core and chop the apples (it helps to drop them into slightly salted water – they don’t go brown), add in the sugar and vinegar and then just bring to the boil (stir so that the sugar dissolves) then simmer uncovered until it thickens – it won’t take long, about 45 minutes to an hour.
When the chutney is at the right consistency, take if off the heat and stir in the herbs.
Make sure your bottles are sterilised, then pour in the chutney and pop on the lids.