Sunday, 6 January 2013

The last of the summer produce and Christmas gifts

In my previous post 2013 A Year of Progression . I promised to catch up on a long over due post.

This year (as I may have mentioned once or 300 times) I attempted to grow some salad, herbs and vegetables. I was ridiculously proud when (most) of them grew into things I could actually eat and cook with. Simple things really are great.
I had quite a few tomato plants and with the mild weather they soldiered on into October. When they stopped ripening I was left with green tomatoes.

This brought back memories of my nan's green tomato chutney. She had the greenest fingers and could bring a twig back from the dead so her tomato plants each year were impressive. Unfortunately this was one of her recipes I haven't been able to find, so I relied upon Lisa Faulkner who has a recipe in her book Recipes from my Mother to my Daughter which seemed quite similar. She only said to cook it for a few minutes but I decided to boil it down for much longer in the traditional manner of making chutney as I don't like the taste of raw onion and I was worried about whether it would be preserved enough to last.
Combined in a box with some oat cakes from a James Martin recipe and some fabulous cheese I bought at my mums local deli it made a perfect present for my friend who always loved my nan's green tomato chutney.
After it was cooked I also blended some to a fine purée and found it made an excellent alternative to tomato ketchup.

Finely chop 750g green tomatoes, 500g cooking apple and 750g onions.
Boil them in a large pan with 600ml malt vinegar and 750g soft brown sugar for about an hour. In a small bowl mix 25g fresh ginger, 1/2 tsp turmeric, 1 tbsp of salt, 3tbsp corn flour and freshly ground black pepper. Add to the mixture and continue to boil until it is thick and glossy and has the texture of chutney. Pour into sterilised jars and seal.

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