Can I repeat myself and do another chutney post? Why, yes I can! I'm a little embarrassed to say that other than brewing my own ciders (posts coming up soon-ish) chutneys are the most interesting thing I've been making at home lately. It's just too hot for anything but salads & grilled meats when it comes to dinner time appetites around here. Seriously, we're averaging over 30 degrees in the evenings after work in the sun-trap we currently call home!
I don't have enough space to grow courgettes of my own around here, in fact the only edibles are in pots as we don't really have much access to big patches of dirt, possibly to do with living on the side of a hill. While i'm having success with one jalapeno (which i'm planning on smoking & turning into chipotle) and my tomatoes have been going great guns, a courgette plant is a bit big.
I guess due to the quality of summer we've been having anybody else who is growing them has been inundated, and for some reason they all decided to give me a sample at once. So with about a kilo of things ranging from small marrows to large courgettes it seemed logical to turn them into something that might last a little longer before going bad.
Now it may not come as much of a surprise for anyone who knows me, but the grow your own, kinda hippie lifestyle led by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall holds massive appeal. If I can find a way to buy a bigger patch of ground somewhere and run a few sheep & goats of my own sometime in the future i'd be stoked. As a fan of most of the River Cottage series I knew there was a good chance that one of the regulars - Pam the Jam - would have a tasty way of dealing with the over abundance of courgette, and I wasn't wrong.
Now, because i'm just difficult, I did things a little bit differently:
- I only salted the courgettes for the amount of time it took me to do everything else.
- I doubled the amount of red chilli
- I added coriander leaves
- I used cumin seed (2 T)
- I didn't bother to make a paste with the onion, garlic, ginger & chilli
- I dry toasted the spices, ground them & then added to the above four ingredients once they'd sweated down
- I used half the oil
- I used a mixture of palm sugar & castor sugar, as I didn't have any demerara
My changes weren't a negative however, the end result is incredibly delicious. Thus far I've been mostly consuming it in sandwiches with cheese - but I think it will go really well in burgers too. I've tried it as a condiment to chicken hot-dogs and that was pretty good, but I suspect it will shine the most when used to smooth out & deepen the flavours of a lamb curry.
I've got a recipe for such a thing hanging around somewhere, so if the weather cools down enough to make curry seem like a good option I'll give it a whirl and see how I get on. But for now, i'm happy to report that this is yet another super easy recipe that gives you a product better than anything on your average supermarket shelf.