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Chutney gluttony

February 17, 2010

The first jar of anything I ever canned was pickled carrots, which I made 3 or 4 years ago at an afternoon workshop at the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens.  I don’t know if they still offer the workshop but if they do its worth taking for any nervous but aspiring canners.  Classie Parker is a total riot, teaches with vaudvillian flair, and is extremely passionate about canning.  Plus, her relaxed but professional approach immediately dispels any notions that home canning brings you within a spoons throw of a dire case of botulism.

But that was long ago: and in the intervening years I’ve managed to put up a good number of sauces, pickles, preserves, relishes, and pantry staples.  What I barely managed to do in the interim was eat those carrots.  I don’t know why but those pickled carrots never had much appeal.  (I did finally eat them a few months ago, they were ok).  So you can imagine how I felt when confronted with Dorris and Jilly‘s february can jam challenge food of the month: carrots…  I was a bit lost to say the least.   Until I found Mary Anne Dragan’s Well Preserved.  I know, I know, I need another canning book like a fish needs a bicycle, but she had four good recipes for carrot concoctions.  I immediately purchased the book.  It vaguely occurred to me to upchallenge myself and make all four recipes just to see how they all were, fortunately the thought passed.  And Kate at hipgirls already tried the marmalad(y) so we can all see how well that turned out.

And so, without further ado: my carrot and coconut chutney (recipe after the jump)!  I made it straight from the book for the first time and basically I think its really good… it made me want to break out the Madhur Jaffrey, find a large mango lassi and make my own naan (even though Noerah says you need a special clay oven (or a tandoor) to really make naan properly – but this chutney kind of makes you want to build a new clay oven!).  The only changes I’d make next time would be to keep the carrots in slightly bigger chunks, increase the ratio of coconut to carrot and make it a little less spicy (only because I’m a sissy), other than that, its great.

Carrot and Coconut Chutney (from Mary Anne Dragan’s Well Preserved)

(this makes half the recipe – about 4 pint jars)

  • 12 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 1 orange
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 1 1/4c brown sugar
  • 3/4 c cider vinegar
  • 1/2 c flaked coconut
  • 1/4c chopped dried apricot
  • 1 Tbs grated fresh ginger
  • 1/2 Tbs mustard seed
  • 1/2 Tbs dried chili flakes
  • 1/2tsp salt
  • 1/2 cinnamon stick

Cook the carrots until soft and then mash roughly (leave fairly large pieces).

Peel the lemon and orange zest and chop very thin.  Remove pith from the fruit and chop the fruit finely (discard seeds)

Combine sugar, vinegar and zest in a medium pot and bring to boil over medium heat.  Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.  Add the remaining ingredients and simmer 30-40 minutes, stirring often (during final 10 minutes of cooking stir constantly to avoid burning)

Remove from heat, ladle into prepared jars and seal and process in hot water bath for 10 minutes.

–By Talia (and photos by Noerah of course!)

22 Comments leave one →
  1. February 17, 2010 9:50 am

    Now you’re talking! This chutney really appeals to me. I’ve been struggling to find a recipe that needs carrots rather than just includes them. I’l definitely be trying your recipe. Thanks for the inspiration.

  2. February 17, 2010 10:07 am

    Thanks Gloria: I am glad it inspired you: I felt the same way when I found the recipe! Let us know when you make it — would love to see how it turns out for you! -T

  3. February 17, 2010 12:03 pm

    doing happy dance since spicy chutney gluttony will soon be mine! hey-ho cheers for a neighborly, evening cocktail jar swap.

    What an astute and so true desire, Gloria, re:finding a recipe that actually needs carrots not just includes them.

    • February 17, 2010 12:46 pm

      I love the idea of the swap: can’t wait. I think we should all set up some kind of major can jam swap… eveyrone sends to the person who’s name is after theirs…. i guess international swapping might be a problem, but it would be great to have all that variety!

      • February 17, 2010 12:52 pm

        Oh, I’d love to participate in a swap, too, but shipping from and to Germany would be too expensive. Also, customs might be a problem. And isn’t it forbidden to ship certain foods to the US?

      • February 18, 2010 7:06 am

        i guess at least we can swap the photos and recipes…

  4. February 17, 2010 12:18 pm

    Carrots on hand? Check. Coconut on hand? Check. I’m getting closer to this chutney every minute. But wait! What’s brown cubar? Is that supposed to be sugar? Or some new thing I don’t know about? (Which is very possible; please school me!)

    • February 17, 2010 12:44 pm

      Julia:ooooops, sugar, definitely. I fixed it! Its amazing how many times I proofread and if I wrote the thing I miss the mistakes. need to try spellcheck!
      Anyway, am glad you are getting close to chutney making! Let us know how it goes…

      • February 17, 2010 5:07 pm

        What would I do without spell check? Next stop: Chutney!

  5. February 17, 2010 12:33 pm

    Interesting recipe! I also like the pictures a lot. I never would have thought of a combination of carrots and coconut. Btw, I made Naan a couple weeks ago and it worked fine without the special oven. For the can jam I made a Persian Carrot Jam and a Carrot Cake Jam, and both are really delicious. I can’t stand pickles, so it had to something on the sweet side ;-).

    • February 17, 2010 12:48 pm

      thanks for sharing the naan recipe: i will definitely try it. I am distressed to see another baking challenge: I so want to join… but I am overcommited already I think… help!!

      • February 17, 2010 12:55 pm

        I am kind of overcommitted, too. I have 7 simultaneous challenges – aaaahhhh… And I have a REAL life (if someone is wondering…) 😉

  6. Sarah permalink
    February 17, 2010 3:59 pm

    oooh, that looks amazing! Can anyone recommend a good first-timers canning book? (sorry if it has already been mentioned and I missed it.)


    • February 17, 2010 4:17 pm

      there are two Ball books that I think are good (I forget what they are called: the blue book maybe?), comprehensive books to get started with. I think I have one I can lend you. I also really like Eugenia Bone’s Well Preserved, which has general instructions but its has much fewer recipes than those Ball books.

    • February 17, 2010 4:20 pm

      I’d say “Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving”.

  7. February 18, 2010 12:23 am

    I may scale this down enough to just eat it now and not can it up… I’m trying to be good and not make tons and tons of stuff this year: it was actually my resolution!

    It does look delicious, and really does force the carrot into a proper spotlight!

    • February 18, 2010 7:05 am

      I hear you: I’ve promised myself I have to work my way through all the cans from last summer before I get started putting up more… (these winter canning projects for the can jam don’t count of course). making just a little sounds good: you can play around with the quantities a lot more that way too.

  8. February 18, 2010 9:14 am

    Looks good! I made Vietnamese Carrot Daikon pickles for the can jam – goes on Banh Mi…check it out:

    My favorite canning book is the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving by Judy Kingri et al…perfect for newbies and veterans alike.

  9. thecosmiccowgirl permalink
    February 22, 2010 5:54 pm

    this looks utterly delicious! beautiful pics, too. i sure am enjoying the can jam experience.

    • February 22, 2010 8:32 pm

      thanks! your jam looks really tasty too. the can jam is definitely great: i’m looking forward to seeing the roundup wednesday!

  10. February 24, 2010 1:02 pm

    Tigress mentioned Well Preserved so I bought it and I absolutely love it. It is now my favourite book and I want to try almost every recipe it contains. This can-jamming lark is such fun.

    • February 24, 2010 1:21 pm

      It does seem like a great book: so many, many recipes to try. I see from your own canjam post that you have quite a collection of books to keep yourself very busy with!!

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