Who’s up for some Spicy Pumpkin and Apply Chutney this Halloween eve?

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       Spicy Pumpkin & Apple Chutney


            4 tbsp rapeseed, vegetable or sunflower oil

            2 large onions, finely chopped

            100g piece of ginger, peeled and thinly shredded

            1 fat red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped

            15 cardamom pods, bashed open

            2 long cinnamon sticks, snapped in half

            1 tbsp black mustard seeds

            2 tsp cumin seeds

            4 fat or 6 smaller garlic cloves, peeled and sliced

            1kg butternut squash or pumpkin flesh, peeled and cut into sugar-cube size pieces

            3 Bramley apples (about 500g), peeled and cut into sugar-cube size pieces

            1 tsp ground turmeric

            500g light soft brown sugar

            300ml cider vinegar


.   Heat the oil in a large preserving pan, then gently fry the onions, ginger, chilli, cardamom, cinnamon, mustard and cumin seeds together for 5 mins, until the spices are aromatic.

.   Stir the garlic, squash and apples into the onions, then cook for 10-15 mins more, until the onions and apples are soft and the squash yields a little here and there.

.   Stir in the turmeric and sugar and let it melt around the vegetables. Simmer for 5 mins – this process almost candies the chunks of pumpkin, so that it doesn’t entirely break down during the next step.

.   Pour in the vinegar, season with 2 tsp salt, then bring the chutney back to a simmer. Cook, stirring regularly, for about 30 mins or until the apple has cooked down to make a squishy base for the chutney, with chunks of tender pumpkin here and there, and a little syrupiness at the bottom of the pan – you don’t want the chutney to be too dry as it will thicken as it cools.

.  Spoon the hot chutney into sterilised jars and seal. The chutney can be eaten straight away, or left to mellow in a dark place. You can store it for up to six months.


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