Making chutney is THE winter ritual. I love this beetroot chutney all year round, because of its great taste and the fantastic splash of colour it can add to any dish. It goes especially well with juicy meats such as venison or lamb, and boiled vegetables.
1 Granny Smith Apple
200g red tomatoes (can use canned ones)
2 cups brown sugar
4 cups red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 clove of garlic
1 branch of fresh rosemary
2 bay leaves
salt and pepper
if you like hot spice, 1 green chilli pepper
3 teaspoons ground ginger
Chop and seed the tomatoes, getting rid of the watery pulp. Put the onion, the tomatoes and the apple in the food processor and blitz until they become a homogeneous paste. Add salt, the peeled garlic clove, the bay leaves and the rosemary branch and let it sit for at least half an hour.
Cut the beetroot in homogenous little cubes and fry them in the hot oil for about 10 minutes. Remove the bay leaves, garlic and rosemary from the apple-tomato-onion paste and add it to the mix. Let fry for another r5 minutes, then add all the other ingredients: water, vinegar, sugar, ginger and the finely chopped chilli pepper if you like the taste (you probably want to take the seeds out first). Let it simmer, uncovered, for about 40 minutes stirring every now and then: the chutney is ready when most of the liquid has been absorbed or has evaporated and the vegetables are all a mushy, beetroot coloured feast.
Pour in sterilised jars and it’s good to go. For a little extra touch, add a branch of rosemary inside every jar, or a curl of caramelised ginger on top.
This is great as a present, but also terrific as a secret ingredient for my special lamb sauce. Mix one cup of this chutney with a cup of Greek style yoghurt, the juice of one lime and a tablespoon of chopped mint leaves for a gorgeously pink sauce that perfectly suits all cuts of lamb and even chicken.