Last week I posted some brownies spurred on by a gift of cherries from our friends, the Boy also got cooking and make an amazing chutney.

I had to share as although it takes a while and a bit of patience to stone so many cherries, it was so so good!

You need:
1 pound cherries, pitted
1 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup rice vinegar
1 large onion, chopped
1 Granny Smith apple – peeled, cored and chopped
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
2 tablespoons Chinese five-spice powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1. Place the cherries, cider vinegar, rice vinegar, onion, apple, white sugar, brown sugar, ginger, five-spice powder, salt, and nutmeg into a large pot. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.

2. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

3. Remove the lid, and continue simmering until the desired consistency has been reached.
Chill before serving.

We tucked in to it with cheese a few nights ago!



Cheese and Wine Night

July 6, 2010

For the next installment of my hosting the girls night, I decided on a cheese and wine evening. There are a lot of recipes in this post, but are all quite quick and easy (apart from the marmalade!) and are all you need for your own homemade wine and cheese evening!

I made oatcakes (I’ll save this recipe for another time as there are enough in here!) and olive oil bread crackers…

Literally all you have to do to make the olive oil crackers is get yourself some nice wholemeal batch bread, take as many slices as you think you’ll need and cut into squares, I made mine about an inch and a half square but they can be a big or as small as you like.

Pop them onto a roasting tray and brush with olive oil and bake for 5-10 minutes. That’s it.

red onion marmalade…

This takes some effort, purely because of the amount of onions you have to chop. The comfort being that red onions don’t make you cry as much as white, and that this marmalade is so good.

2kg red onions or regular onions
4 garlic cloves
140g butter
4 tbsp olive oil
140gĀ golden caster sugar
1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
pinch of chilli flakes (optional)
75cl bottle red wine
350ml sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
200ml port

Halve and thinly slice the onions, (this is the long and annoying part)then thinly slice the garlic.

Melt the butter with the oil in a large, heavy-based saucepan over a high heat.
Tip in the onions and garlic and give them a good stir so they are glossed with butter.
Sprinkle over the sugar, thyme leaves, chilli flakes if using and some salt and pepper.

Give everything another really good stir and reduce the heat slightly. Cook uncovered for 40-50 minutes, stirring occasionally.

The onions are ready when all their juices have evaporated, they’re really soft and sticky and smell of sugar caramelising. They should be so soft that they break when pressed against the side of the pan with a wooden spoon. Slow cooking is the secret of really soft and sticky onions, so don’t rush this part.

Pour in the wine, vinegar and port and simmer everything, still uncovered, over a high heat for 25-30 minutes, stirring every so often until the onions are a deep mahogany colour and the liquid has reduced by about two-thirds.

It’s done when drawing a spoon across the bottom of the pan clears a path that fills rapidly with syrupy juice. Leave the onions to cool in the pan, then scoop into sterilised jars and seal. Can be eaten straight away, but keeps in the fridge for up to 3 months.

and tomato and chilli jam…

This is an easy one, just chuck it all in the oven!

1kg tomatoes , very ripe, halved
3 red chillies , roughly chopped
1 onion , cut into wedges
4 garlic cloves , sliced
1cm root ginger , grated
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
100g brown sugar
olive oil

Heat the oven to 200C/fan 180C/ gas 4. Tip the tomatoes, chillies, onion, garlic, ginger, vinegar and sugar into a shallow roasting tin, add a good slug of olive oil and mix with your hands. Sprinkle with salt.

Roast for 40 minutes or until the tomatoes are browned and the onion well cooked and caramelised. Cool and tip into jars.

plus fruit and tons of cheese!

We were so so full and felt a little bit sick, but it was worth it, always worth it with cheese!

I plan on having another as soon as the weather cools and red wine is back on the menu…