There is something incredibly comforting about making chutney. I find it more relaxing than jam making. That long drawn out bubbling of the fruit and spices. The heady aromas that pervade the kitchen and rise and spread into every nook and cranny of the house.
Waiting patiently. Time of your hands as it stews into perfection on the aga. Sit at the kitchen table and flip through a magazine while sipping coffee. Enjoying a peaceful time yet knowing that the time is being spent well. Just being in the kitchen while preserving perfection takes place in the pan.
Just the odd stir now and then so it doesn’t stick.
Back to relaxing. Looking out of the window and the windswept garden. The end of summer flowers looking a little sad and weather-worn.
It is warm and cosy in the kitchen. A feeling of Autumn fills the air.
Chutney making is a gentle art, one of time and relaxation and savouring the moment.
This plum chutney is easy to make and the addition of ginger gives it a really warming spicy kick so perfect for the cooler months to come. I have pureed it before bottling to make a smooth chutney instead of the usual chunky variety. This step is optional but I think it makes a nice change and makes the chutney perfect for sandwiches and that toastie.
Use this with ham, turkey, lamb or beef and as the perfect addition to a ploughman’s lunch or good old cheese on toast.
- 12 red plums
- 3cm/1" fresh ginger peeled and grated
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- 1 chopped red chilli
- 125ml/4½ fl oz water
- 225g/8oz granulated sugar
- Cut plums in half and remove the stones
- Tie stones into a piece of muslin so they can easily be removed from the chutney after cooking
- Cook the plums (with stones in bag), vanilla extract, chilli and ginger with the water until the plums are tender.
- Add the sugar and stir until dissolved.
- Raise temperature to boil then lower heat and simmer for approximately 30 minutes.
- Puree the chutney till smooth and spoon into a sterilised jar.
- Makes one large jar.