from one generation to the next
Onion, garlic, apples and dried fruit are common ingredients in fruit based homemade chutneys of the style our mothers and grandmothers made when the backyard tomato crop was overwhelming. I love my Mum’s recipes, not just for the nostalgia, but also for the downright delicious flavour, but sadly, on my current diet, I can no longer enjoy a barbecued sausage with my usual homemade relish.
I find plain grilled meat mundane and I’m tired of being limited to just a dab of dijon mustard. It’s tomato season, time to be creative and turn some of that plump ripe goodness into a tummy friendly chutney.
Firstly and probably most importantly is to balance the proportion of salt, sugar and vinegar with the tomatoes, the remainder is to create a subtle spicy profile with warmth and complexity to enhance the delicious tomato flavour.
Because this was a test recipe I only made a small batch, enough to fill a 500g jam jar. Within a week it had been emptied. I wasn’t the only fan of this tomato chutney so I’m off the buy bulk tomatoes….
Spicy Tomato Relish
2 tablespoons pungent mustard oil*
1 tablespoon nigella* seeds
1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
500g roma tomatoes, finely diced
1/2 cup castor sugar
60 mls white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons sea salt
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
Heat a wide pan over a medium heat, add the mustard oil mustard seeds, cumin seeds and nigella. When the seeds begin to sizzle and pop, add the tomatoes and increase the heat to bring the pan to the boil.
Add the remaining ingredients, then cook at a medium simmer until the chutney has thickened and most of the clear juices have evaporated.
Spoon into a sterilised jar** and seal immediately.
*pungeant mustard seed oil and nigella seeds are available at Indian grocery stores
**To sterilise the jar, wash in warm soapy water, soak off the old label, then put the jar only on a tray in a preheated 120C oven for 30 minutes. Boil the lid in small saucepan of water for 5 minutes before topping the hot jars of chutney. As it cools, a vacuum is created, guaranteeing longevity, up to 2 years.