Preparation time: 15 min
Cooking time: 1-2 hrs
A sweet but tart chutney. This is a new recipe, so I can't yet say what cheese it goes best with (not ripe enough, yet!)
Put the oven on a low heat and put your clean storage jars, lids off, in the oven to warm up. Halve and stone the greengages. Peel, core and finely chop the apples (if you’re lazy, like me, you can grate them- the finer the apple, the quicker the chutney will cook). Finely chop the onion and mash the garlic. In a large cooking pot, add half the vinegar and set on a large heat. Add the onions. Put the spices and garlic in muslin and drop in the vinegar (keep this on a bit of string- will make it easier to take out afterwards). Once the onions have started to turn colour, add the apples and greengages and turn down the heat- just slightly. Once the fruits start to turn mushy, add the rest of the vinegar. Add more if it is too thick and starting to stick to the pan. Don’t add too much, however, as the sugar will alter the texture of the chutney, and it won’t thicken enough if you add too much. Once the remaining vinegar has been full stirred in, chop and stone the dates. Add them to the chutney mix, then slowly add the sugar, stirring as you go. Add salt to taste towards the end of the cooking process. Turn down to a medium heat and keep covered, stirring occasionally. Once the dates have been absorbed into the chutney, check the texture. There should be no whole pieces of fruit left, just a thick mush- there may, however, be whole pieces of onion left and this is fine. Remove the muslin bag and spoon chutney into jars, sealing down immediately. Keep stored 1 month before eating, and remember that most chutneys develop fuller flavour the longer they are kept.