Saturday, 12 September 2015

The Apple Diaries 2015 - Apple Chutney

I may not have blogged for a couple of weeks, but there has been plenty of apple-related cooking going on here.  After a barren year from our apple tree last year, I really needed to make another batch of chutney.  I used my failsafe simple recipe which I have made for many years now.  I've blogged it before, but here it is again:

Penelope Keith's Apple Chutney

4lb windfall apples, peeled, cored and roughly diced
1lb onions, chopped
1lb sultanas
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 pint malt vinegar
1lb soft brown sugar
1tsp ground ginger
1tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground pepper

Put all ingredients into a pan.  Bring to the boil and simmer for 3-4 hours until dark brown.  (My note - from experience... Keep an eye on it for the last hour as it can stick and burn if left for too long at this point).  Pot whilst hot, in sterilised jars.

The major change that I made this year was to try making it in the slow cooker.  I figured this would stop the chutney sticking to the pan which can often happen if you take your eye off it in the final stages of cooking.  I was correct in that it didn't stick, but the slight problem was that the liquid failed to evaporate as the slow cooker has a lid. 

However, this was easily solved:  Once the chutney was dark brown (after several hours in the cooker), I simply took the lid off for another hour or so until it reduced slightly.  I can't give precise timings, slow-cooking just isn't like that, I just judged 'by eye' when it was ready.

I had an eager helper for the potting process, and am pleased that we now have 5 decent sized jars full of chutney to see us through the coming year.  It's best to leave it a few months before eating, but as we still have various jars of various vintages from various friends and family, that'll be fine!

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