The vegetable garden is now in full production and surpluses are beginning to occur. Three pounds of runner beans was too great a quantity to ingest in one sitting and I therfore determined that they should be converted into pots of chutney for laying down and winter consumption. There would of course have to be some ancillary ingredients. Unfortunately the transformation of beans to chutney requires the assistance of other garden produce and some items from the larder. The following items were assembled:-
3 lbs runner beans - chopped
2 onions - chopped
4 garlic cloves - chopped
2 pinches chilli powder
2 lbs light brown soft sugar
2 teaspoons fresh ginger - grated
1 tablespoon mustard powder
2 pints malt vinegar
2 tablespoons cornflour
1.5 tablespoons ground turmeric
A saucepan of slightly salted water was then brought to the boil and the beans and onions added and cooked for ten minutes. The water was then drained off with the beans and onions being transferred to a food processor where they suffered the fate of a thousand knives before being dumped back into the saucepan. There they were joined by the garlic, ginger and sugar as well as one and a half pints of the vinegar. The resultant concoction was boiled for some fifteen minutes. The remaining vinegar was then poured into a bowl where it was joined by the mustard powder, cornflour, turmeric and chilli pepper and then added to the saucepan where the combined liquid amalgam was then boiled for a further fifteen minutes. Cooling proceeded after which the sweet smelling sludge, (well truthfully don't all chutneys look a bit unappealing in isolation?), was spooned into the awaiting sterilised jars.
They say that it takes six to eight weeks for a chutney to mature and taste its best. I did however think that I should check that this culinary delight was palatable. I am happy to report that no ill affects have manifested themselves to date and surprisingly it tasted quite nice. Perhaps cheese, biscuits and a rich port might be an appropriate accompaniment.