Monday, August 8, 2011

Spicy eggplant chutney

I got some eggplant in the CSA last week, and in case I haven't posted about this before, eggplant is not my favorite. You can't really eat it raw, it's squishy when you cook it, and a lot of people are allergic to it because it's part of the nightshade family. (Although, so are potatoes, and I love those like life itself.)

So I decided to dust off the preserving cookbook because I thought I remembered there being an eggplant chutney in there. Turns out I was right. Let's use up those little purple suckers.

You mix up 2 lb. eggplant and 2 red onions, along with a little tomato paste, ginger, cumin seeds, red pepper flakes. Then you add the brown sugar and cider vinegar and mix well. It doesn't look like chutney at this point, more like some kind of pickle-smelling vegetable salad.

Bring this to a boil, then simmer for 1 hour, until all the vinegar is soaked up or evaporated, and you have a gooey mess. (I didn't simmer at quite a high enough temperature, so I had to go a little longer than an hour.) But the results are good!

Looks like chutney to me. I canned them in a water bath for 10 min. and I heard the seals pop into place almost immediately.

The jars have to sit and let the flavors meld for about a month, but then I can give them away. Let me know if you want to try one!

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