Green tomato chutney is a great way to use up green tomatoes in the fall. If you have a garden and grow your tomatoes, chances are you’ll end up with more green tomatoes than you need. This recipe is so easy to make and tastes good. I like to add a bit of sweetness by adding raisins. But you can experiment with your combination of spices.
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Easy Green Tomato Chutney Recipe
How to make green tomato chutney with your unripened fruits. You’ll need about two pounds of green tomatoes, onions, and a few other ingredients. It’s a recipe that cooks down to a rich dark chutney that can be served with cheese, bread, and other pickled vegetables. You can also use green tomato chutney as a marinade
If you grow your tomatoes, you know what it’s like to have a mountain of green fruit at the end of summer. This year I’m looking at an entire greenhouse full of several different varieties. I’ll take some indoors to ripen but honestly, they’re delicious if you feel adventurous enough to cook with them. I’ve tried fried green tomatoes, green tomato pasta sauce, and green tomato ketchup before. One of the best recipes though is green tomato chutney.
If I were to describe the flavour it would be sweet and sour, yet rich with a touch of heat. It pairs well with cheese, bread, and cured meats and is pretty much a British allotment preserve staple. When life gives you green tomatoes, you make green tomato chutney!
- 2½ kg green tomatoes
- 500g onion
- 1 rounded tbsp salt
- 500g sultanas
- 500g cooking apples
- 500g light muscovado sugar
- 1.14l jar spiced pickling vinegar
- STEP 1 Slice the tomatoes (you can skin them if you want, but it’s not necessary). Finely chop the onions. Layer both in a large bowl with the salt. Leave overnight.
- STEP 2 The next day, chop the sultanas using a large, sharp knife, then peel, core and chop the apples. Put the sugar and vinegar into a large pan and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Add the sultanas and apples and simmer for 10 mins. Strain the tomatoes and onions in a colander (but don’t rinse), then tip into the pan and return to the boil.
- STEP 3 Simmer for about 1 hr, stirring occasionally until the mixture is thick and pulpy. Transfer to warmed jars (see tips, below) and cover with lids.
You can use old jam jars for chutney as long as the inside of the lids is plastic coated, otherwise, the vinegar will corrode the metal. Alternatively, Kilner jars are perfect. To sterilise, wash the jars in very hot water and leave them to drain. When they are dry, put them in the oven at 160C/140C fan/gas 4 for 10 mins before using.
Step 1: Ingredients
- 2.5kg green tomatoes, roughly chopped
- 0.5kg onions, finely sliced
- 4 tsp / 30g salt
- 1L malt vinegar
- 0.5kg soft light brown sugar
- 250g sultanas, roughly chopped
- 3 tsp / 20g ground pepper
- Preserving pan or another large lidless pan. I prefer a 10 L stainless stock pot.
- 7 – 10 jars with lids
- Food wrap/cling film
- Sticky labels
- I find a jam funnel useful. Especially for larger bits of tomato.
Approximate cost: 2.5 GBP per batch (if you grew the tomatoes).Add TipAsk QuestionCommentDownload
Step 2: Prepare
Finely slice your onions and washed green tomatoes, cutting out any bad bits. Add to a large bowl and stir. Add the 4 teaspoons of salt, stir again and then cover with food wrap or a large plate and leave overnight.
This will draw out lots of tomato juices and help enhance the flavours. This step can be skipped if you don’t want to leave it overnight, just reduce the salt by half.
I thoroughly recommend doing this step as it will reduce the time you need to cook your chutney for. Much of the cooking time is just reducing the liquid down so it’s a thick enough consistency for chutney.Add TipAsk QuestionCommentDownload
Step 3: Heat the Vinegar, and Add the Sugar.
The next day…
Place the litre of vinegar into a large pan. Add the 500g of light brown soft sugar and stir over medium heat until all the sugar has dissolved.
Bring to the boil.Add TipAsk QuestionCommentDownload
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Step 4: Sultanas
Roughly chop the sultanas then add to the simmering vinegar and sugar. Bring the whole lot to a gentle boil.Add TipAsk QuestionCommentDownload
Step 5: Drain and Add the Tomatoes and Onions
Remove the cover from the tomatoes and onions that you’ve left overnight. Drain well but do not rinse. Rinsing will add more water and the goal of leaving overnight with salt was to remove as much water as possible without pulping them.
Add to the chutney and stir in well. Add the 3 teaspoons / 15g white pepper.
Bring to a gentle boil.Add TipAsk QuestionCommentDownload
Step 6: Cooking Time
Once all the ingredients have been added they need to be boiled gently for 1.5 to 2 hours until thick and golden. The goal of this cooking time is to reduce the liquid down so the chutney’s thick and to soften the tomatoes and onions until they take on the sugar and turn brown.
All you’re doing for the next 1 – 2 hours is stirring occasionally and adjusting the heat if they start to boil too vigorously.
You might as well get your jars ready now!Add TipAsk QuestionCommentDownload
Step 7: Preparing Your Jars
Wash your jars and lids well in hot water. I used jars I’d saved from sauces and jams and scrounged from friends.
Place them in an oven preheated to 140 degrees Celcius (280 Fahrenheit).
This will dry and sterilise them.Add TipAsk QuestionCommentDownload
When your chutney has reduced by almost half and is thick and golden brown, it is almost ready. Boil it a little longer, I’m almost certain you’ll be as impatient as I am and need to leave it just a tiny bit longer. I found a good gauge of it being thick enough when I could drag my wooden spoon across the bottom of the pan and see the bottom for a little while after it had passed. When that happens, it’s ready.
Remove your sterilised jars from the oven and place them on newspaper. At this point, I realised I didn’t have any newspaper so I used chopping boards. Regardless, make sure you have something covering your work surfaces to make it easier to clean up, bottling the chutney will make a fair bit of mess.
Holding the hot jars in an oven mitt in one hand, spoon the chutney into the jars with the other. When full give them a quick tap on the bottom against the work surface to knock out any air bubbles then fill the next jar.
When all your jars are in full place a double layer of cling film or food wrap across the top of each jar and then trim around it. As the chutney cools the air below the wrap will contract, sucking the cling film down against the surface, protecting it further from mould. You can see the concave shape of the wrap in the pictures.Add TipAsk QuestionCommentDownload
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Step 9: Labelling and Topping Off
While the jars cool, write some labels showing the date, content and maker.
Once cool, add the lids and stick them on the labels. You can start eating the chutney right away or leave it to mature for one or two weeks. I couldn’t wait so had some warm with cheese and biscuits. Mmmmmm.
The finished chutney, if preserved well, should keep for six months or more. Last week I opened a jar my gran gave me the previous Christmas (9 months) and it was still fine.