Seasonal Food in Turkey – A Recipe For Winter Chutney

Wednesday’s post was a cheerful display of the contrasting autumn / winter colours of the seasonal food that currently tempts the food shopper on Fethiye market – velvety plums, blushing apples, the vibrant orange of mandalinas and the rich, brown chestnuts that sit comfortably alongside the vibrant greens of winter chard and yeşilik (any type of edible greenery that passes as salad leaves).

We were there on Tuesday for our regular shopping, but we were also on a mission to buy some extra ingredients; ingredients to make up our Christmas chutney. If you grown your own fruit and vegetables, the great thing about chutney is it’s a really good way of making use of the glut of whatever is in season at a given time of year. Fethiye market is a perpetual glut of seasonal food so we should probably make chutney more often, but for us, chutney is a food that feels wintery and even festive, hence why we make it in November.

A Recipe for Chutney

British TV chef/food campaigner, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall is a bit of a hero of ours and this recipe is loosely based on the suggestions in his book, The River Cottage Year. You can use our weights and ingredients as a rough guide – and substitute any ingredients you may not have for something similar. That’s why chutney is so easy to make. The biggest difficulty with it is waiting (anything from 2 weeks to 2 months) for it to mature. Waiting is not our forte!

Homemade Chutney

Our ingredients made just over a litre of chutney

Our finished chutney is in the photo above. The jar with the red lid is a standard 37cl jar and this recipe will fill three of those jars.

  • 500g courgettes cut into small cubes
  • 250g tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • 250g plums, stones removed and flesh roughly chopped
  • 500g apples, peeled, cored and cut into cubes
  • 250g onions, peeled and chopped
  • 250g raisins
  • As much hot chilli as you can handle!!! (chilli flakes or powder)
  • 250g brown sugar
  • 400ml apple vinegar topped up to 500ml with water (cider vinegar or white wine vinegar is also fine)
  • teaspoon of salt
Making Homemade Chutney

Your chutney ingredients will reduce after a while

Put all the ingredients into a large pan. Our biggest pan holds just short of 3 litres and, as you can see in the photos, this mixture fills it right to the top.

  • Leave the pan uncovered and place it on a medium heat so that you bring the mixture to the boil slowly. Give it a stir every now and then so it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
  • Meanwhile, prepare a spice bag. If you have muslin, great. If not (like us), cut a square from anything made of cotton. We always use a cotton t-shirt and it works fine. Our spice bag contained a few peppercorns, cloves, smashed cardamom pods, smashed coriander seeds and a cinnamon stick, broken into pieces.
  • Place the spices in the centre of your cotton square, bring the corners together and tie with a piece of string. Push the bag right down into the centre of your mixture.
  • Simmer your chutney for 2-3 hours, stirring every few minutes.
  • Look at the difference in colour between the finished product in the top photo and the early stages in the second set of photos. You know your chutney is ready when the fruits have softened, the mixture has reduced and the colour has darkened. You should be able to drag a wooden spoon through it to reveal the bottom of the pan.
  • Allow your chutney to cool and then jar it up in sterilised jars while it’s still a little warm. (We sterilise our jars with boiling water.) Put the lids on your jars and forget about your chutney for a while.
Homemade Chutney With Cheese

Cheese and chutney – perfect!

As mentioned above, you’re supposed to leave your chutney sealed so that it can mature for between 2 weeks and 2 months. I also mentioned that waiting is not our forte. Well, we had to test it! And we needed a photo, purely for the purposes of this blog post. It’s fruity, it’s spicy, it’s sweet, it’s sour…it’s so good served with a tangy Izmir tulum cheese. I doubt that little jar of chutney is going to see Christmas…

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Comments

  1. Christopher Allen says

    Oh, I’m a big chutney fan. These look incredible.

  2. @ Christoper Allen: Yeah, we love chutney, too. the big challenge is waiting till Christmas now before we crack it open. 🙂

  3. Am going to have a go at that chutney, it looks great 🙂

  4. @ Tania: It is great and really easy, too. 🙂

  5. I’ve never made chutney before but your recipe looks great and hopefully, fairly easy to make. Could be a great idea for Xmas presents- if I can bear to part with a few bottles. Off to the markets!

  6. @ Jenny: That’s exactly what we did last year. We made pickled red cabbage and muhammara and gave it out as gifts. A cheap present but thoughtful at the same time. 😉

  7. This looks super delish! Possibly another reason to use those plump, dried cranberries at my local pazar too. =)Happy cooking!

  8. Back in Montreal, arrived Friday night with no suitcase, 140 of them were missing so am at home waiting and hoping. I want to thank you for making my trip so much more interesting because of all the info you write on your blog. Next week, I will do your chutney, it will be delicious with lamb shanks cooked slowly in the oven with cut celery roots and quinces. Ill see you next September since I rented my apt for another three months in Gunlukbashi.
    Suzanne and Mini!

  9. That chutney is beautiful! Would want to save this for the months to come!

  10. I made this up today, had a small quantity left over that would not fit in the pots, so I have just had to tuck into some with some cheese 🙂
    Thank you for sharing this recipe, already a few of my friends are also planning on giving it ago 🙂
    Have made up about 6 small jars to give for Christmas gifts this year…..mmmm

  11. @ Joy: Definitely. They’d go really well wouldn’t they? 🙂

    @ Suzanne: We’ve never had the dreaded missing suitcase scenario. Hope you get it back soon and hope to catch up with you again next year. It was lovely to meet up. 🙂

    @ Belinda: It’s fab. Give it a go. 🙂

    @ Tania: Glad it’s been a success for you and your friends. Perfect Christmas gifts, too. We always do things like that. Cheaper and more thoughtful. 🙂

  12. If I’m nice Sue, could I get a jar of that chutney, it looks soooooooooo yummy. Welcome back!
    Love Bécassine

  13. Aurais-je le privilège de reçevoir un petit pot de chutney? Çà sent jusqu’ici. Heureuse de te revoir ma Sue!

  14. @ Becassine: Well, we hope you get a jar of chutney as a gift, anyway. Good luck. 🙂

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