A Year’s Worth of Apple Chutney
by muddy feet mama
This year’s apple season wasn’t as amazing in Vallejo as it was last year. Last year we had so many apples I juiced 3 carboys of hard cider, made pints and pints of sauce and butter, froze blanched slices for pie, and experimented a million other ways. One successful experiment was this apple chutney. In fact, since this year’s apple excess was a fraction of what I expected, we were forced to choose our apple priorities. I’m not one for condiments, but this chutney (with some sharp cheese) I could eat every day! Once we met our applesauce quota this apple chutney rose to the top of our priority list.
As usual, you may have to adapt this recipe to more manageable measurements since I tend to work in large amounts. I hope you enjoy!
- 6 lb apples
- 6 lb pitted dates
- 6 lb yellow onions
- 6 cups brown sugar
- 6 cups apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup balsamic vinegar (optional)
Peel, core and chop the apples. Dice the dates and onions. All pieces should be relatively uniform in size – the size of a dime or smaller. Add brown sugar and cider vinegar & stir so that all ingredients are thoroughly mixed. Let sit for at least a week, stirring at least once a day. You will notice that the liquid from the apples and cider vinegar will be absorbed by the dates. By the end of the week you should have a lovely, rich chutney. If after tasting you decide you’d like it a little less sweet you can add a cup of balsamic vinegar at the end to beef it up a little. That’s my preference.
Remove about 25% of the chutney and set aside. Process the remaining chutney in a food processor for 5 seconds – no longer! We want a slightly more uniform body to the chutney – one that behaves like a spread but isn’t a spread. Obviously I have to do this in batches since I work with such large quantities! Once complete, add the chunkier chutney to the processed chutney. This will lend a nice variety to the texture and will maintain its “hand made” quality.
To can, process in a water bath. I cold-packed and processed 14 pints for 15 minutes, and 28 4 oz. jars for 10 minutes (timed once the water began boiling). Personally I like half-pints for chutney but we were out, so I made use of what was on hand. I anticipate the 4 oz. jars will be nice to share as small gifts, and will be the perfect side to a cheese and cracker plate. Yum!
That’s it for now. Thanks for stopping by!