Saturday, December 14, 2013

Tomato and Roasted Pepper Chutney

     Over the summer, chutneys became one of our go-to ways to process surplus veggies. If you were following us this summer, you'll know we were absolutely laden down with bell peppers and tomatoes. Whenever we have crazy amounts of produce to use, we usually end up consulting Preserve It! This book has a few wonderful chutney recipes. Fair warning, making chutney does qualify as a PITA (Pain In The Ass). It's time consuming and requires a fair amount of attention. The result is totally worth it, though. This stuff is great on crackers with cream cheese or brie. It's also good on bagels. If you do decide to process this for long term storage, I once again recommend consulting the National Center for Home Food Preparation for information on how not to accidentally make someone's anus fall out. As always, notes and changes are in blue.
Tomato and Roasted Pepper Chutney
via Preserve It!

  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1 orange bell pepper (no orange peppers on hand. We just used another red pepper)
  • 1 yellow bell pepper
  • 3 lb. ripe tomatoes, plunged into boiling water for 1 minute and then peeled
  • 2 onions, coarsely chopped
  • 2-1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups white wine vinegar
  1. Preheat the oven to 400F. Place the peppers on a baking sheet and cook for about 25-30 minutes, until they begin to char slightly. Remove from the oven, put in a plastic bag and leave to cool.
  2. Remove the pepper stems, skins and seeds (we core, stem, seed and slice the peppers before actually cooking them. It just seems more logical. Also, peeling the peppers has never failed to be a total Pain In The Ass). Coarsely chop the tomatoes. Transfer the peeled tomatoes, roasted peppers and onions to a food processor; pulse briefly until chopped but not mushy.
  3. Transfer the mixture to a preserving pan (couldn't even tell you what that is)  or a large, heavy-bottomed, stainless steel saucepan (I do have one of those!) with the sugar and vinegar. Cook over low heat, stirring continuously, until the sugar has dissolved. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for about 1 to 1-1/2 hours, stirring occasionally, until it starts to thicken and turn sticky (try to read that last bit again without snickering). You may need to increase the heat a little toward the end of cooking, but stir continuously so the chutney doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan. 
  4. Ladle into warm, sterilized, half-pint jars, leaving about 1/4" head space, and making sure there are no air gaps. Cover and seal with a two part lid. Process in a boiling water bath for 12 minutes (If you want to do pint jars, boil for 15-16 minutes. You can thank me now for changing this step from the cookbook. The book says to process in the water bath, THEN put on the lids. I assure you, that won't work unless you're some sort of sorcerer). Store in a cool, dark place. Allow the flavors to mature for 1 month. Refrigerate after opening.  
Good times!

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