Thursday, March 1, 2018

Chili-Spiked Green Tomato Chutney

A ridiculous amount of chilies go into this green tomato chutney, with just enough sweet and sour to even the playing field.

Chili-Spiked Green Tomato Chutney

I have yet to meet a Canadian homegrower or farmer who can finish the growing season with all ripe produce. At the end of the summer, we're often left with at least a few unripe peppers, cucumbers and squash - but nothing is so prevalent as the green tomato crop. Where I live, we have essentially three and a half months of decent growing weather outdoors, and when you grow from seed as I do even starting in March won't guarantee full production. Luckily, I've become pretty well versed in ways of using up those green tomatoes that will never ripen, no matter how much windowsill love you give them (if they've started to turn red, though, into the window box they go) - mincemeat (times three) and baked goods are definitely great, if surprising, sweet options. But what if you want to embrace the unripe fruit's tart and crunchy side?

Well, if you're like me, you turn to a different kind of preserve - chutney. I love making chutney almost as much as my mom loves eating it, which is no surprise given it's irresistible sweet-sour-savoury flavour. Last year when I canned up this batch, I added a punch of heat with the last of our garden's chilies - serranos and Thai bird peppers. Understandably, straight out of the pot this condiment is hellfire-like in spice (especially if you don't de-rib and seed the peppers), but I (and those I gave jars of this to) are glad to report, after hanging out in the pantry (if you can it) or fridge (without a waterbath) for at least a week, the burn mellows to a pleasant zip in amongst the sour and sweet. It has enough flavour to stand up to hearty creamy curries and meat dishes as well as create works of delicious art when mixed with plain rice or quinoa and a veggie or two. As I've mentioned before on this blog, my mom likes nothing more than mixing chutney into a plain stir fry, but she also dunks pita or naan into it as a side dish.

Chili-Spiked Green Tomato Chutney
Makes ~3 cups, 24 (2 tbsp) servings
7 small green tomatoes, chopped
2 large Asian pears (or 2 large Granny Smith apples), peeled and chopped
2 small onions, chopped
½ cup raisins
300ml apple cider vinegar (I personally like the cloudy kind)
8 minced Thai chillies
3 minced serranos
5 cloves minced garlic
300g brown sugar
½ tbsp kosher salt
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
½ tsp black pepper
  1. Combine all the ingredients in a large heavy pot and bring to a boil..
  2. Simmer 1 ½ hours until the vegetables are soft and the mixture is reduced to a thick, spoonable consistency.
  3. Can 20 minutes in a waterbath
Amount Per Serving
Calories: 79.9
Total Fat: 0.2 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 129.2 mg
Total Carbs: 25.0 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.5 g
Protein: 0.7 g