Sunday, December 7, 2008

Caramelised Onion Chutney

Onion chutney requires only a few ingredients - onions of course (any will do, but red onions give the nicest colour and sweet taste), a vinegar - sherry, red wine, raspberry or balsamic are all ideal, and brown sugar, together with some bay leaves, juniper berries and peppercorns for flavour.

Chop 6 large onions as coursely or finely as you like and heat with a small amount of canola oil in a stainless steel pan until they are soft. Add 1 cup of your chosen vinegar (or a mixture of vinegars) and 1 cup of brown sugar, and drop in a couple of bay leaves and 15-20 crushed black peppercorns and 5 juniper berries. Bring the mixture to the boil and then simmer gently for 1 to 1 1/2 hours until the onions have gone translucent and all the liquid has evaporated.

Pour the hot mixture straight into small (200g) sterilised jars, seal, and store somewhere cool and dark or in the fridge. The chutney should keep for at least 6 months. To ensure the chutney can keep even longer (1 year plus), put the sealed jars in boiling water and simmer for 15 minutes. Line metal jar lids with greaseproof paper to protect them from the vinegar in the chutney.