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Tomato Chutney v4

From: andrew cooke <andrew@...>

Date: Tue, 31 May 2016 16:58:16 -0400

This is an attempt to simplify the recipe above, perhaps for posting
on Metafilter.

A simple tomato chutney, similar to what you can buy in the
supermarket in the UK (Baxters, Heinz, Sainsbury's).  Good for adding
to cheese sandwiches, etc.


The amounts can be scaled to match the amount of puree in the can (I
typically find 200g and 300g cans, hence the two columns below).

  Tomato puree                   300 g       200 g
  Fresh tomatoes, roughly diced  1.5 kg        1 kg
  Onions, finely chopped         750 g       500 g
  White granulated sugar         750 g       500 g
  Apple vinegar                  300 ml      200 ml
  Yellow mustard seeds           1.5 tbsp      1 tbsp
  Juice of 1-2 lemons

For the larger amounts (left column) you likely need a 24cm pan (where
I live, that's larger than a saucepan).  Otherwise, a large saucepan
will probably do.  The number of lemons isn't critical - I use one
juicy or two drier lemons for either size.

Boil to desired consistency, then jar.  The amounts in the left column
produce 5-6 500g jars; the right column gives 3-4 jars.

This is basically tomato jam so the desired consistency is similar to
that for jam.  The way I work is to first get things boiling nicely,
which can take 30min or so with a covered pan on a medium heat.  Then
replace the lid with a splash quard (you want steam to escape) and
adjust the heat to a continuous steady boil, stirring every 10-15min.
After around 1 hr of cooking the bubbling will start to change, as the
liquid thickens, becoming more "explosive".  And after another 30m or
so, the mixture will start to stick, a little, on the bottom of the
pan (but can - and should - be easily scraped off when stirring).
Taking a little chutney out on a teaspoon, and allowing it to cool,
you should then see that the mixture is thick enough to hold a
significant edge and to feel like jam (rather than water) in the
mouth.  It is then ready to jar.

The timings above are very rough.  Everything depends on how much
pectin you have (from the fruit), how watery the tomatoes are, and how
much heat you are supplying.  Don't be afraid to cook for longer as
long as it's not seriously sticking to the pan bottom (but it will
thicken as it cools, so don't worry too much!)

I sterilise jars in the oven while cooking - see the instructions at - but I
still tend to keep them in the freezer, just in case.


For a darker chutney, with a slightly more caramelly flavour, use
brown sugar or fry the onions in a little oil until golden.  You can
also fry a teaspoon or two of cumin seeds with the onions for extra
depth.  I usually add some chilies (merken) - the cooking seems to
make them milder than I would expect.  I've also tried adding garlic,
but didn't notice much difference.

If you were really dedicated you could substitute tomatoes for the
puree and reduce for longer, I guess.  You would also need to add some

Update: After letting col and tasting, I feel this is something of a
failed experiment.  First, I didn't really cook it for quite long
enough and it is a little too runny.  And second, alhough this is
exactly what I was aiming for, it turns out that the cut-back, simple,
flavour doesn't compare to the richer perviousversions where the onion
was fried with cumin and brown sugar was used.


Chutney v5

From: andrew cooke <andrew@...>

Date: Mon, 29 Aug 2016 20:33:23 -0300

The last attempt was for a very "clean" tomatey, simple chutney.  But
in the end I found that boring, so this time round I'm going for
something more complex.  Similar to above (variations in weight
unintentional), but with more spice:

  Tomato puree      300g
  Tomatoes          1.4kg
  Onions            0.8kg
  Brown sugar       0.8kg
  Cumin seeds         3tsp
  Coriander powder  1.5tsp
  Mustard seeds     1.5tvsp
  Crushed garlic      3tsp
  Lemons              2
  Small mild chilies  4

Seemed to cook quickly, and I jarred after only 1h20m, but then
realised it was not setting, so threw everything back into the pot for
more time.  2.5kg final product.


Chutney v6

From: andrew cooke <andrew@...>

Date: Tue, 17 Jan 2017 16:25:33 -0300

Going slightly sweeter.

  Tomato puree    300g
  Tomatoes        1.4kg
  Onions          0.8kg
  Brown sugar     1.0kg
  Cumins seeds      1tsp
  Mustard seeds     1dsp
  Merken            2tsp
  Vinegar          300ml    (accidentally missing from v5 recipe above)

Cooked on slightly too high a heat and it burnt on the bottom of the
pan (very thin, black layer).  Despite that, appears to taste fine
(and is darker).


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