Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Tomato Chutney

Beautiful Ripe Tomatoes
Even though tomatoes feature quite heavily in our day-to-day cooking, I've never made a tomato chutney or relish before. Never. Not even once!

Well, that has now changed!

Having never made one before, I searched my many cook books and the internet and found numerous recipes.  Some with spice, some without.  Some with apple and raisins, others without.  And some made with red wine vinegar and others with a distilled vinegar.  So there's quite a variation of this simple preserve.  I liked the sound of this 'Easy Tomato Chutney' recipe from Woman's Weekly, though I have adjusted it slightly to suit our tastes.

Tomato Chutney
Tomato Chutney Ingredients
And do you know what, I'm really pleased with my first effort at making a tomato chutney.  Really pleased. My parents are regular consumers of shop bought tomato chutney, so we shared the batch with them.  And they, too, really enjoyed it.  It wasn't too spicy to cause them digestive problems (sorry!), but had enough of a hit to be flavoursome.  As I was making it I did wonder if there was enough spice in the mix, but I restrained myself and I'm so glad I did because the flavour develops whilst the chutney is maturing for 3-4 weeks.

Lovely Ripe Tomatoes

So, yes, you do need to make this a few weeks ahead of when it's required.  But it's definitely worth it.  I'll certainly be making it again.  It's a great way of preserving a glut of tomatoes, and if you like you can read my 'all things' tomato here.  It would make a great gift presented in a small kilner jar adorned with a pretty ribbon.  Or you could go down the traditional route and store it in a jam jar with a gingham cloth lid!

Tomato Chutney
Tomato Chutney with Wenslydale Cheese and Crackers (it tastes better than it looks, trust me!)
The picture above really doesn't do the chutney any favours!  It's no looker! My dad used a few choice adjectives when he saw it!  But, once sampled, he (& we) thoroughly enjoyed it. My parents consumed their share of the tomato relish with a variety of meat sandwiches; whereas Mr E & I enjoyed ours with a ploughman's style lunch.  I particularly enjoyed it with the crumbly Wenslydale cheese. It would be lovely with some fresh bread, such as a quick and easy homemade soda bread. And, of course, it would make a great addition to a picnic.

Tomato Chutney     Yum
Volume: approx. 420g

Freezable: No
Difficulty: Very Easy
Adapted from: Woman's Weekly

You will need
500g tomatoes, chopped into equal sizes (we used a variety; beef, piccolo, and yellow and red cherry tomatoes)
1 onion, chopped
2 small / 1 large eating apple, chopped (skin left on)
2 tsp garlic puree OR 1 or 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
90g soft light brown muscovado sugar
1/2 tsp ground ginger
pinch of ground cloves
1/2 tsp allspice
150ml distilled malt vinegar
jam jar(s) / kilner jar(s)
jam making seals (wax discs and cellophane)

How to make it

1.  In hot soapy water thoroughly clean your jam jars / kilner jars, or you could place them in a dishwasher for a hot wash.  Place on a tray (for ease of moving them) in a warm oven set at 140c / 120c fan / gas 1 to dry completely.  If you're using kilner jars, boil the rubber seal as dry heat can damage them.  

2.  Put all of the ingredients into a heavy based pan and give it a good mix.

3.  Slowly bring to the boil to dissolve the sugar.  Reduce the temperature to simmering point.  Simmer for one and a half hours, stirring regularly, until the chutney is thick and jam like.  After about an hour of cooking the tomatoes will have shed their skins.  You may want to remove them by carefully fishing them out. Allow the chutney to finish cooking.

4.  Decant the relish into the sterilised jars and place a wax disc on top of the chutney (waxside down).  Then place a slightly moistened cellophane cover over the jar secured with an elastic band. Label the jars with the date made.

5.  Once the jars are cold, place in the fridge for about 3 weeks before eating.  Consume within 3 months.  



  1. Chutney YUM!
    Cheese, crackers, homemade chutney - perfection on a plate!
    Betty x
    The Betty Stamp

    1. And it's so easy to make - what's not to like. I'll probably even make some as Christmas gifts (my words I'm talking about Christmas already!)
      Thanks for reading Betty
      Angela x
      Only Crumbs Remain


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