Chillies in Wales.

This is the first year I have grown chillies, I picked up a free packet of seed from a local garden centre, (I can’t bear things going to waste!) I started them off in a heated propagator and grew them in the poly tunnel.
cayenne peppers ripening in the poly tunnel

We had a slow supply of chillies in the late summer, I used some and froze them as they ripened, (chopped without seeds), they weren’t as hot as I thought they might be, considering they are cayenne! As the first frosts approached in early December I thought I’d better pick the last of them that hadn’t ripened on the plant, and was going to freeze them green… I put them on the side and then got waylaid doing other things, as is my wont!

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There were some lovely horned fruits, couldn’t resist a picture.

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They started to ripen and shrivel and after a month sitting in a warm kitchen they are looking lovely, now I’m thinking I should roughly chop them and put them in a jar, try to keep the heat, for some heartwarming winter meals…

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First batch of green tomato chutney this year.

So I started, one of the baskets from previous post was 4 kg so the recipe is as follows (for variations see previous chutney post).

4.4 kg green tomatoes
1.2 kg onions
1.3 kg small apples
70g fresh root ginger chopped very small
2 pints vinegar
50g chilli powder
500g sultanas
1kg sugar
2 tsp salt

I have shown the method in pictures. For more detail see previous post. This batch made 20 jars in a selection of sizes.

Chopping the tomatoes first

Chopping the tomatoes first

The tomatoes and onions are in the pan, now the apples, this year half from my trees, sharp and half from my inlaws trees, sweet, 1.3 kg down to just over a kilo peeled and cored, you could of course leave the peel on.

The tomatoes and onions are in the pan, now the apples, this year half from my trees, sharp and half from my inlaws trees, sweet, 1.3 kg down to just over a kilo peeled and cored, you could of course leave the peel on.

All "veg" in the pan, I put on the heat when I'd finished the onions.

All “veg” in the pan, I put on the heat when I’d finished the onions, the ginger is in too.

Stir it all up and add the vinegar. Up to that point it had taken one hour.

Stir it all up and add the vinegar. Up to this point it had taken one hour.

After about half an hour simmering, added all the rest of the ingredients and stirred. Keep stirring every 10-15 minutes to stop it sticking too badly to the bottom of the pan.

After about half an hour simmering, add all the rest of the ingredients and stir. Keep stirring every 10-15 minutes to stop it sticking too badly to the bottom of the pan.

After about half an hour with everything in.

After about half an hour with everything in.

After two hours of simmering it's a deep orange/red. I used 50g of chilli this time, I think it's a bit hot, but as it will fade with age (who doesn't!) I'm not bothered.

After two hours of simmering it’s a deep orange/red. I used 50g of chilli this time, I think it’s a bit hot, but as it will fade with age (who doesn’t!) I’m not bothered, no molasses in the cupboard this year so it’s not as dark as usual.

Messy jars, with jug and jam funnel, as you can see I'll use any old jar, some are on their 4th or 5th use.

Messy jars, with jug and jam funnel, as you can see I’ll use any old jar, some are on their 4th or 5th use.

Cleaned lidded and ready to label. The last bit that wouldn't fit in a jar on a plate, really quite pokey this year!

All cleaned with a damp cloth, especially the thread of the jars, lidded and ready to label. The last bit that wouldn’t fit in a jar on a plate, really quite pokey this year!