I love this guest-blogging thing. Caribou, if only I could taste the outcome of all of this culinary genius… *not-so-subtle nudge-nudge wink-wink”. Eat your heart out Mrs. Ball:
Green Tomato Chutney:
“I found the original recipe for this on BBC Food, by James Martin, but I bastardised the method because I’m lazy and impatient. I confess it was probably easier than any other recipe I’ve tried with my shed-loads of green tomatoes…
175g/6oz light brown sugar
150ml/5fl oz white wine vinegar
1 shallot, peeled, finely chopped (the second time I made this I used a small onion so I don’t think it’s that important for it to specifically be a shallot) – good, because a good shallot is hard to come by down here in deepest darkest – Cakepoppie.
1 garlic clove, peeled, finely chopped
2cm/¾in piece fresh root ginger, peeled, finely grated
1 red chilli, finely chopped
125g/4½oz sultanas (I used a raisin and sultana mix)
600g/1lb 5oz green tomatoes, quartered
Put the chopped tomatoes and onions in a colander and stir in the salt. Allow to sit for a while as the salt extracts any excess water.
Put the vinegar in a pan and dissolve the sugar. Add all the other ingredients and bring to a boil, then add the tomato/onion mix. Wait for it to boil up then turn down to a simmer until cooked through.
Yes, that really is it. If you are using ripe tomatoes instead of green tomatoes (which I haven’t tried yet), your cooking time will reduce.
The original recipe calls for you to quarter the tomatoes, but this gives REALLY CHUNKY chutney depending on the size of your tomato. If you like that, good! For me, I chopped the big tomatoes into 8, and smaller ones into quarters. As I grew them myself they all turned out different sizes anyway. Each piece was about the size of the top half of my thumb to the joint.
The recipe also said to melt the sugar in a pan then add vinegar. But when I did it this way the sugar wouldn’t melt (maybe I had the wrong sugar, who knows), and then when I added the vinegar, it crystallised! The next time I did it I added a tiny splash of water to the pan first, dissolving the sugar in it rather than melting the sugar neat. Tastes just as good.
This recipe makes a sweet, chunky chutney that falls apart because there’s no gluey stuff, unlike the gloopy kind that sticks together like Mrs. Balls. It’s very yummy with meat, and perfect for hot dogs and burgers.”
PS: Did anyone else find it strange that, in the movie Legally Blonde, the stepdaughter’s name was Chutney? Who on earth is called Chutney?? – Cakepoppie.