Sunday, May 27, 2012

Mango Chutney

About 10 years ago, I came across a recipe that looked interesting, but called for an ingredient I'd never tried - Mango Chutney. After a bit of searching, I found it in a local store and to my delight discovered that I really liked it! Over the next couple years, I bought several jars but then was dismayed to learn that the brand was no longer available. 

I tried several other brands over the next year or so, but just never found one I liked as much. I kind of felt like Goldilocks while I was trying them. One was too hot and spicy, one was too hard as it used under-ripe mangoes and one was a bit on the bland side. 

Nothing was "just right"!

So, I went looking for a recipe to make my own. I'd never tried something that ambitious on my own before but I wanted my Mango Chutney!! There are lots of recipes for it, but I finally decided to go for this one.

This is an adaptation of a Peach Chutney recipe from the August 1998 issue of Canadian Living. I've switched the peaches to mango but you could also use pears or a combination of mango and pear. The original was also double in size. I have made the full version a couple of times but if you don't have a decent sized canner or don't want to have to process large amounts, this is a better option.

This recipe could also be cut in half again. If you do half of this recipe, you could substitute 1/2 cup orange juice or 5-Alive (Mango or Citrus work best) for the whole orange but the real orange and the zest provide a much better flavour.

This chutney is delicious served with poultry, fish, pork or ham. It is great as a alternative for relish on burgers or hot dogs. It also makes a great dip for chicken tenders!

Mango Chutney

1/2 cup raisins (Thompson, Sultana or Golden)
1 1/2 teaspoon mustard seed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon curry powder (for a mild chutney)
1/2 teaspoon dried ginger
2 large garlic cloves finely chopped or minced
1 large orange
1 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
4 1/2 cups diced fresh ripe mango (This will be about 5 medium sized mangoes peeled and pit removed. Don't worry if it is closer to 5 cups when cut)
2 cups diced apple (2 medium sized apples, cored but unpeeled)
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup diced sweet red bell pepper
1 cup + 2 Tablespoons cider vinegar

Soak the raisins in warm water for about 15 minutes then rinse, drain well and air dry on a paper towel till needed.

Combine the mustard seed, salt, cloves, cinnamon, curry powder and ginger. Set aside, along with the garlic for later.

With a zester or a fine grater, zest the orange peel onto a plate. You should have 1 1/2 - 2 Tablespoons. Peel the orange, discarding the pith. Section the orange and remove as much of the remaining pith and membrane as possible, then cut the sections into small pieces. (I just use my fingers to tear them but do it over a bowl so you don't lose any of the juice!)

In a large pot, combine the chopped orange, orange zest, mango, apple, onion, pepper, raisins and brown sugar - then stir in the vinegar. Bring to a boil then reduce to medium heat and allow to simmer for about 1 1/2 hours - stirring often (about every 10 minutes). The chutney should be fairly thick at this point.
Add the combined spices and garlic then mix well. Cook for about 15-25 minutes or until very thick. NOTE: If the spices are cooked for longer than 25 minutes, they will lose their potency and the flavour will be lost!)

NOTE: If the chutney is chunkier than you want it, you can use a stick blender or a potato masher to purée it a bit more. (Personally, I use the blender or masher sparingly as I like mine a bit chunky for a nicer variety in textures.)

With a ladle, spoon the hot chutney into processed glass sealer's*, leaving 1/2 inch of space at the top. Carefully wipe the rim of the jar with a paper towel. Seal with processed lids and rings*.

Place sealed jars STANDING UPRIGHT in hot water bath and cover with enough hot water so that jars are about an inch under the water. Boil for 10 minutes then, using jar tongs, carefully remove the jars to a wire rack. Allow the jars to stand on the wire rack for 24 hours to allow the chutney to completely cool to room temperature. The jar lids should also "pop" (indent) during that time. That indicates that the jar is properly sealed. Store in cool dry place for up to 3 years. If any of the jars do NOT seal or once jars are opened they must be stored in the fridge for up to 6 months. Note: If there are not enough filled jars to allow them to all stand up then add some water to another jar and place in center so that the chutney filled ones will not tip over in the hot water bath.

Makes about 4 1/2 - 5 pints (9-10 cups)


*TO PROCESS JARS, LIDS AND RINGS: Wash all of the jars, lids and rings then place in a canner or large, deep pot. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Boil for 5-10 minutes. Using jar tongs, carefully remove the jars making sure to allow the water to drain out of them before standing them upside down on a wire rack to cool. Carefully remove the lids and rings and also place on a rack to cool. Avoid touching the insides of the jars, rings or lids with your hands as that will contaminate them. You should also process at least one or two extra jars, lids and rings in case one breaks or doesn't fit properly. Note: For the lids and rings, I prefer to use a mesh strainer that my mom had for blanching vegetables. That way the pieces are all easily removed in one group rather than fishing the bottom of the pot with tongs to get them out. 


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