Jams and Chutneys

 

Apple Chutney   (Makes about 2.25kg / 5lb)

1.5kg / 3lb cooking apples                                                            450g /1lb onions

50g / 2oz raisins                                                                             50g / 2oz root ginger

1 small green pepper                                                                     1tbsp mustard powder

2tsp ground coriander                                                                   3 cloves garlic, crushed

275g / 10oz demerara sugar                                                        600ml / 1 pint vinegar (white or malt)

Peel, core and chop the apples, chop the onions, pepper and raisins and grate the ginger. Mix these together in a large saucepan and add the other ingredients.

Bring to the boil, stirring occasionally. Cover the pan, reduce the heat and simmer for 1 hour. Stir frequently during cooking to make sure they do not stick to the pan.

Transfer to warmed pots and cover immediately with airtight lids. Allow to mature for a few weeks.

This is quite a sweet chutney, for a sharper taste reduce sugar by 75g / 3oz.

Plum Jam   (Makes 2.75kg / 6lb)

1.75kg / 4lb hard plums

2 small oranges – grated rind and juice

1.75kg / 4lb granulated sugar

25g / 1oz butter

Stone and chop the plums. Place in a large saucepan with the orange juice and rind and 25g / 1oz of the sugar. Crack about 20 stones, take out the kernels and add them to the pan. Then bring to the boil and simmer gently over a low heat until the fruit is softened – about 5 minutes.

Add the rest of the sugar to the pan and heat slowly, stirring continuously, until the sugar melts completely. Bring to a rapid, rolling boil and boil to setting point. Remove some of the scum from the surface with a slotted spoon and stir in the butter. Pour into warmed jars and cover.

To test setting point put a small plate or saucer in the freezer to get very cold. Remove jam from heat then place a spoonful of jam onto the cold saucer. In a few minutes the surface of the jam will form a skin if setting point is reached. Push the cooled jam with your finger – if it is ready, the surface should form wrinkles like the skin on hot milk.

Pear Preserves

Pear and Lemon Preserve

1kg / 2lb pears

300ml / ½ pint water

2 lemons

Approx. 375g / 1 ½ lb sugar

Rinse and roughly chop the pears unpeeled or cored. Put in a large pan, add the water and lemon juice. Chop the rest of the lemon and add to the pan. Bring to the boil, cover the pan and reduce the heat, Simmer for about 1 hour until the fruit is reduced to a pulp.

Press the pulp through a fine sieve and weigh the resulting mixture. Add 350g / 12oz sugar for each 450g / 1lb of pulp. Return to the heat and stir over a low heat until the sugar has completely dissolved. Bring to the boil and simmer for about 45 minutes, stirring frequently. Transfer to warmed and sterilised jars.

Gingered Pear Pickle

1kg / 2lb pears

1 green pepper

2 large onions

100g / 4oz dates

2 tbsp finely chopped root ginger

175g / 6oz sugar

300ml / ½ pint vinegar

Salt & ground black pepper

Peel, core and slice the pears and put in a large saucepan. Chop the green pepper, onions and dates and add them to the pan. Stir them in, followed by the ginger, sugar and vinegar. Add salt and pepper and bring the pickle to the boil.

Reduce the heat and simmer uncovered for about 1 hour, stirring frequently. Transfer to warmed and sterilised jars and cover immediately with an airtight lid. Allow to mature for 2 – 3 weeks.