Sunday, August 18, 2013

What's gotten into me??

I'm not quite sure what has gotten into me lately, not sure what is driving this desire to get back to my "roots", to make do, to make it by hand. Maybe it's the milestone Big Birthday that I had a few months ago. I'm still reeling from the fact that I am of a certain age. Good gosh, how does this happen... You know what I'm talking about,(well maybe some of you). It's a very strange and unsettling feeling too know that more of my life is behind me than is in front of me. Not much liking it, but what are ya' gonna' do. Any way I digress. I do that sometimes. ;-) So I plan to document my adventures, my accomplishments, yes and even the things that come out no so perfect. It's life, right. Keeping it real. My husband (The Hubbs) is a great tomato farmer, (squash and pepper farmer too). He loves to plant varieties that have served him well in the past as well as experiement with new varieties. We always have many more tomatos than we can eat, friends get tired of them after a while. My Mom would have been canning her heart out, but I have not gotten that deep into my roots... yet. I came across a recipe for Apple Tomato Chutney. It called for 10 tomatos. Sweet!! Plus it was a recipe for my pressure cooker...I love my pressure cooker. I'll save that for another day. So the picture at the top is the final product and the picture below is pre chutney, prior to cooking and melding of flavors. I ended up cooking it about 40 minutes longer after pressure cooking so as to thicken it up, this allowed the flavors to really co-mingle. Can apples, tomatos and golden raisins co-mingle? Oh sure they can. It turned out pretty well. What's that you say, you're wondering what the heck all this fuss is about, what is chutney?? Is that what you're thinking, well keep reading; Chutney is becoming a more and more popular condiment, but most people don't know exactly what it is - in large part because there are so many different kinds of chutney available. Chutney, in its basic form, is a condiment that contains fruit, vinegar, sugar and spices. It originated in India and was discovered by the Western world when British soldiers and colonists brought recipes back to England, along with other popular Indian foods, such as curries. It can be thick and chunky or smooth, and has a heat level that can range from very sweet to very spicy. The mixtures can be either cooked or uncooked and virtually all of them rely on the addition of chilies for heat. Mango chutney is probably the most popular variety, in part because mangoes are a popular fruit in India, but also because it was the first chutney that was widely available to Europeans. Broadly, a chutney is basically a type of relish and there are really and endless number of variations that can be made on the theme, such as Fresh Peach Chutney, Melon Apple Chutney, Green Tomato Chutney, Mango Chutney. And of course this recipe.....Apple Tomato Chutney.