Autumn marks chutney making in our house, two-three weeks worth of vinegar smell pervading the house. I start with real zeal, taking delight in chopping and mixing. There is something rather satisfying turning excess vegetables and foraged fruits into a variety of chutneys.
We grow our own vegetables, and are fortunate to have inherited apple, quince, medlar and plum trees. Our neighbours love hedgerow harvesting and have kindly passed on tips for blackberrying and sloes.
the tot my son helped me make my first batch of apple and blackberry chutney, I’m hoping it tastes as good as blackberry and apple crumble. We loved harvesting the fruit.
Some of our favourites are:
Plum chutney – although sadly I cannot remember the precise recipe we loved.
Apple and mint jelly – as far as I am concerned roast chicken is not roast chicken unless I have apple and mint jelly!
Glutney Chutney, just because you can put anything and everything in. The chutney is great for flavouring currys.
Mango chutney, we use a recipe from Jams Preserves and Chutneys Handbook by Patten as it has a cheap-ish version. Half the ingredients are cooking apples as opposed to mango.
Red onion relish, this is my brothers favourite.
Now is the time to make ahead for Christmas as they take a month or so to mature. Come Christmas time you will be delighted to have a shelf full of different chutneys ready to share.
My top tip is to remember to label each batch as you make it (last Christmas I guessed what was in each jar, shhhh!). In respect to reusing jars we save them over the year but have been known (pre zero waste!) visiting a supermarket and buying the economy range of the cheapest filled jar available, about 14p as opposed to a a new empty jar at 60p! It is worth checking out freegle for free jars, and if fortune is your way fruit too.
Not into chutney? How about Quince Vodka? my husband loves this. He rarely drinks but he does enjoy quince vodka (it never gets given away!), apparently tasting similar to alcopop drinks.
Do you have a favourite chutney recipe?