makes about 2 quarts – easily scales up (doubles, triples, or more)
The term chutney comes from the Indian word chatni, meaning "strongly spiced." It is a condiment, typically consisting of a mix of chopped fruits, vinegar, spices and sugar, cooked into a chunky spread. It pairs well with grilled or roasted meats, cheeses, or as an hors d’oeuvre with papadam crackers. Generally speaking, chutneys tend toward the spicy side, but it's easy to adjust the heat factor if you make your own.
2 large peaches
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 large shallot, diced small
1 large garlic clove, peeled and minced
½ inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled
1 Tbsp. minced lemon zest
¼ cup lemon juice
¼ tsp. red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 tsp. white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp. light brown sugar
½ tsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste
3 whole cardamom pods
- Bring a pot of water to a boil. Cut a shallow X in the bottom of each peach. Plunge the peach in the boiling water. After 30 seconds to a minute (when the skin begins to lift away from the flesh), remove the peach to a bowl of iced water to stop the cooking and make the peach cold enough to handle. Peel the peaches and chop them into ½ inch chunks.
- Heat the olive oil in a non-reactive skillet over a medium flame. Add the shallot, garlic, and ginger, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook until the mixture is fragrant and has softened, about 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients, raise the heat, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook at a steady simmer for 20 minutes, until the fruit has softened, the chutney has thickened, and flavors have melded. Adjust seasoning with salt, sugar, vinegar, or spice if needed.
- If you like, you may can your chutney, sealing according to manufacturer’s directions in sterilized canning jars with two-piece lids. Alternatively, store the chutney in the refrigerator once it has cooled to room temperature. The chutney will last at least a week to ten days in the refrigerator. If canned, the flavor will continue to develop over the next month as it sits. Remove cardamom seeds before eating.