It’s apple season, and the trees are heavily ladened this year. There are so many things you can do with apples: cobblers, crumbles, pies, cider and sauce. Fermented chutney is another delicious way to preserve some of autumn’s bounty.
This recipe is for my favourite chutney. I usually make it in large quantities and freeze it so that I can enjoy it throughout the year. It is packed with warm, rich spices and just a hint of sweetness. It is the perfect accompaniment for a samosa or pakora. We also enjoy it with cheese and pain de campagne.
Since it is cooked into a sauce, it is not possible to keep it submerged below a brine. So it is important to keep everything VERY sanitary, and I would recommend using a fido, or airlock to keep the oxygen out while fermenting.
- 3 large apples, peeled, cored and diced
- 4 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tsp mustard seeds
- 1 tsp cumin seeds
- 1 tsp fennel seeds
- 3 curry leaves
- 2 tsp grated ginger root
- ½ tsp asafoetida
- 1 tsp cardamom powder
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ½ tsp turmeric
- ½ tsp cayenne (optional)
- 1 tsp salt
- ¼ cup honey (or sugar)
- 1 tbsp cultured whey (kefir, yogurt)
- Heat oil in a sauce pan and toast mustard seeds. Then add the other seeds. When they begin to brown add the curry leaves and ginger.
- Add apples with the powdered spices and some water (to cover). Simmer until the mixture has thickened.
- Stir in salt and sweetener.
- Put into a sterile jar, and cool to room temperature.
- Stir in culture, and allow to ferment in a cool location until bubbly (about 3 days).
- Store in the refrigerator, or freeze.
-Don’t let the giant list of spices in this recipe scare you. Feel free to omit any that you don’t happen to have in your kitchen, it will still taste delicious.
-Curry leaves are not the same as curry powder, so do not use curry powder as a substitute.
-Indian spices are often toasted until they pop. If you are worried about burning them, simply cook until you can start to smell them.