This recipe makes about 4 medium size preserve glasses of chutney. If you want to make it bulk or to give some away as gifts, double the recipe - I usually do.
1kg Prunes (washed, pitted and halved)
4 tart apples (cut into chunks)
200g dried unsugared apricots (coarsely chopped)
1 onion (cut into thin slivers)
1 garlic (mined)
2 tsp. fresh ginger (grated or finely chopped)
120ml apple vinegar
150g white sugar
1 hot chili (minced)
dried spices (I like nutmeg, cloves, coriander and cardamom)
1 cinnamon stick
1 bay leaf
1. Saute the slivered onions in a large pot on low heat with a bit of oil until they are glassy, soft and browned. Add the chopped chili and the garlic and stir fry quickly.
2. Add the prunes, apricots, raisins, ginger, vinegar, water, and sugar to the pot and stir. Drop in the bay leaf and cinammon stick and make sure they are covered with the liquids. Add the dried spices (it's up to you how much or how little you choose to add.)
3. Bring the contents of the pot to a rolling boil, then reduce the heat to medium and let simmer for about 30 minutes without the lid, stirring occasionally. The prunes will begin to fall apart and the liquids should begin to thicken. If it's still very watery, continue simmering until the liquid has reduced. Otherwise, if it's too thick, add a bit of water - use your judgment!
4. Add the chopped up apples to the prunes and give it a good stir. Continue simmering for about 15 minutes until the apples have softened, but don't overcook them - you don't want them to turn to mush!
5. Remove the bay leaf and cinnamon stick. You're now ready to start canning! Now, if you've never made preserves before there are different ways how to do it (which I won't go into at length on here so do some research if this is your first time.) This is what I do: The night before I run all the jars and lids that I intend to use through the dishwasher to make sure they are spotlessly clean. Some people opt to boil them in water to sterilize but I've never done this and have never had a problem with my preserves spoiling. Shortly before pouring the preserves into the jar, I boil the lids in a pot of water and then let the water cool down just enough so I can dip my hands into the water to take the lids out.
You will need to pour the preserve into the jars piping hot, do not let it cool down, otherwise you won't get a vacuum seal on the lids. What I do is put some of the chutney into a pouring container, pour it into a glass jar, immediately screw on the lid as tight as I can with the help of a dishtowel, then set it down upside down. Don't fill up a row of jars and then leisurely look for the matching lids - you need to close each jar as quickly as possible. The heat of the preserves is in most cases enough to cause the lids to vacuum seal when cooling down.
This is how much the recipe made when doubled. As you can see the jars are standing on the lids to help with the sealing of the lids. Let them cool down overnight (or at least a few hours until they are completely cooled down), then stand them right side up. The jars should now be vacuum sealed! If any of them haven't, you can either choose to consume them right away, or I think you can boil them in hot water again to seal, but I've never had to do that. Store your chutney in a cool and dry place, and in the refrigerator after opening.
Enjoy your chutney! I can't wait to try out more chutney recipes, right now my grocery store just got in some fresh quinces so I may have to make a quince-date chutney next.