Saturday, January 23, 2010

HiHo's Sweet Tomato Chutney

This recipe is hands-down most nearest and dearest to my heart as the number one culinary memory of my mother. This chutney is a truly epic olfactory event. Hi-Ho used to make this as Christmas gifts. The recipe elicits a whole manner of bittersweet memories. I remember returning from school to a house filled with a mouth watering aroma, only to find Mom standing protectively over her bubbling blue LeCreuset filled with simmering heaven. I would risk a finger scalding taste any chance I had. This chutney is Hi-Ho's legacy. I love you and miss you and think of you any time this chutney is close to mind or hand.

In recent years, I gave in to my gnawing desire to have chutney with dinner, and stumbled upon a perfect accompaniment: Fondue. Heaven on earth for sure! Many people have eaten this chutney: at every Indian dinner in my house, every New Years on hot oil fried meat and even with a steak dinner.

The origin of this chutney is from the Madhur Jaffrey.

Isn't she just the sweetest looking woman!? She totally reminds me of Mom. The best part though is how dog eared and stained the recipe page actually is. It is clearly the most actively used page in the book. I will never get rid of HiHo's note, reminding herself that she quadruples the recipe for Christmas.

Typically, I only doubled the recipe making sure I yield enough to can. I love my magnetic lid remover!

OK, enough rambling, and I will post the recipe, but please if you have eaten any of this chutney, please leave a comment!
To Hi-Ho! I love you Mom!



  1. Put the chopped garlic, ginger and 1/2 cup of the vinegar into the container of an electric blender and blend at high speed until smooth.
  2. In a 4-quart, heavy-bottomed pot with non-metallic finish, place the tomatoes and juice from the can, the rest of the vinegar, the sugar, salt and cayenne pepper (or, if you prefer, add the cayenne at the end, a little at a time, stirring and tasting as you do so).
  3. Bring to a boil.
  4. Add puree from blender.
  5. Lower heat and simmer gently, uncovered, for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until chutney becomes thick.
  6. Stir occasionally at first, and more frequently later as it thickens. (A film should cling to a spoon dipped in it.)
  7. You may need to lower the heat as the liquid diminishes.
  8. You should end up with 2 1/2 cups of chutney, and it should be atleast as thick as honey after it cools.
  9. If the canned tomatoes you used have a lot of liquid in them, a longer cooking time may be required, resulting in a little less chutney.
  10. Add the almonds and the raisins.
  11. Simmer, stirring, another 5 minutes.
  12. Turn heat off and allow to cool.
  13. Bottle and Keep refrigerated. It last for years!

1 comment:

Joy! said...

This recipe is more than the sum of its parts and the finished product belies how quick and easy it is to assemble for simmering. I did not have raisins on-hand, but I don't think the author's New England Mom would call me crazy for using dried cranberries instead. Perfectly cooked in 1-1/2 hours and fabulous.