With the warm weather we have been having over the last month I find myself in the enviable position of having a veggie patch that is producing an abundance of tasty tomatoes. I am picking all sorts of colours, shapes and sizes this year and they are great eaten fresh or cooked. In fact, as soon as I think that I have dealt with all of the tomatoes in the kitchen, there is a whole heap ready to pick to replace them. It’s a nice problem to have.
I planted my tomatoes in September this year and they are in full swing. So I have had to ask myself – What do I do with all the sweet, colourful little things? It’s a tough choice, do I eat them like crazy, give them away, or work out how to cook them.
Cooking them came up trumps this time. I considered that it was appropriate that I dig out a Chutney recipe I used last year and give it a go. I found this on the internet ages ago.
I am not one to brag, well… not much anyway… but the result of the session in the kitchen is outstanding! I have never considered myself to be in the league of Jamie Oliver when it comes to the cooking department, but I reckon I don’t do too badly. I don’t mind saying that the Chutney is rather good, and it ticks all the right boxes for me. Do yourself a favour and make a batch just in time for Christmas lunch. Here is the recipe..
Spicy Tomato Chutney Recipe:
12 cups diced tomatoes 2 ½ cups chopped onions 2 cups white vinegar
3 cups brown sugar 4 teaspoons of ground ginger 1 teaspoon of cloves
4 cinnamon sticks 6 star anise pieces ½ teaspoon chili flakes
2 teaspoons of sea salt flakes
- Combine tomatoes, onions, vinegar and sugar in a pot over medium heat. Chuck in the ginger, cloves, cinnamon, star anise and chili.
- Cook over a low heat for 1 – 1 ½ hours. Stir it often so it doesn’t stick.
- Add salt and reduce by half the starting volume – more if you like it thicker.
- When reduced, remove cloves, cinnamon and star anise. While still hot, place in sterilised jars.
- Eat with gusto on top your favorite sliced meat or a bit of cheese!
You can vary the chili depending on your taste. I used a whole red chili that I had in the freezer, and also some frozen grated ginger, about 6 heaped teaspoons. It will also make your life easier if you can put the cloves into one of those tea-ball thingy’s. It took me ages to fish the things out otherwise. I also cooked it with the lid off to speed up the reducing process.
A piece of advice, don’t let too many people taste this delightful Spicy Tomato Chutney, because you will find yourself cooking many batches. Lock it away or at the very least hide it behind your tins of beans in the pantry!
Go on, make it soon and enjoy it. I will be having quite a bit of it as I sit and ponder what I am going to make with the rest of the tomatoes, cucumbers, buckets of zucchini……….
Damn, I make a fine Spicy Tomato Chutney!