A lot of folk have a surfeit of tomatoes this time of year, what with gardens bursting with the buggers and all.
Me? Not so much. This year, I tried a different variety and moving my tomatoes to the front porch in hops of getting a better yield than in the past few years, but, no luck.
Well… I did see more, and larger, tomatoes than in the past, but unfortunately, just as I was about to reap the fruits of my labor, the chipmunks decided to have brunch.
Fortunately, local markets and farm stands are also bursting with tomato deals at this time of year, and so I came to find myself with some extra tiny red and yellow tomatoes that needed dealing with.
Not really enough to make a sauce but, hmmm, how about a chutney?
And not just any chutney, but one made to my taste preferences, so, lots of onion and garlic, my own garam masala, and no sugar; just a bit of honey for sweetness.
•1 tbsp ground cumin
•1 tsp dried basil
•1 tsp dried parsley
•1-1/2 tsp ground black pepper
•1 tsp ground cinnamon
•1 tsp ground cloves
•1 tsp ground nutmeg
•1/2 tsp curry powder
•1/2 tsp Aleppo pepper
•60 mini tomatoes, quartered
– mebbe 6 regular, seeded and diced
•2 cups diced sweet onion
•2 cloves garlic, minced
•2 tbsp olive oil
•1 tsp brown mustard seed
•1 tsp black mustard seed
•1 tsp sea salt
•3 tbsp honey
•1/2 tsp garam masala
Blend all of the garam masala ingredients together and store in a tightly covered container. You’ll obviously have more than needed for this recipe, but I think you’ll find it a spice blend that you’ll add to more and more dishes as you work with it.
To make the chutney, warm the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add the mustard seeds (if you don’t have both black and brown, use two teaspoons of whichever type you do have in your spice rack).
When the seeds start to pop and crackle, add the tomato, onion, and garlic.
Stir in the honey and the sea salt, then reduce the heat to medium-low, partially cover, and simmer, stirring often so the mixture doesn’t burn and stick, for 25 minutes.
Stir in the garam masala and cook for another five minutes.
Note: this recipe will make just a bit over a pint of chutney, so at this point you can transfer the mixture to a storage jar, allow to cool, then stash in your fridge. Or, you can do what I did and transfer the hot chutney into sterilized jars and process them in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes.
Voilà! Pantry shelf stable chutney.
And really, very good chutney, too.
I added about a quarter of a cup of mine to a batch of mussels I was making for dinner and, wow! Were they tasty! Good thing I’d made a large loaf of garlic bread to soak up all those garlicky, chutney-laden juices.
You might could try the chutney just spread on crusty bread, or in place of ketchup on a burger.
I’m thinking that I need to keep an eye out for more tomatoes on sale…