Thursday, September 30, 2010

Delia Smith's Spiced Plum or Damson Chutney

Halve and stone 3lb Warwickshire Drooper plums, damsons, or a mixture of your orchard drupes. Core and finely chop 1lb cooking apples, peel and finely chop 3 large onions, and drop into your preserving pan.

Crush 3 fat cloves of garlic, 2 heaped teaspoons ground ginger, 1lb raisins, 1lb soft brown sugar, 1lb demerara and add to the preserving pan together with 2 pints malt vinegar.

Next add 2 tablespoons salt, 2 small cinnamon sticks (I don't use sticks, as I can't be bothered to fish them out at the end, so just replace with 2 heaped teaspoons ground cinnamon), 1oz whole allspice berries and a dessertspoon of whole cloves. Delia advises wrapping the whole spices into a little square of muslin, but you too can just crush the whole spices in your mortar and pestle and throw into the pan.

Bring everything to the boil, lower heat to a simmer and cook gently for about 2-3 hours until all the vinegar has disappeared, the chutney has thickened and your house smells wonderful. Pour into sterilised jars in the usual way, then leave on your work surface for a few days, admiring your labour. Don't even try to eat until at least Christmas / three months - better the following year.

Thanks Delia.

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