safe chutney using zucchini?

apple2August 26, 2012

I've used ALL Gardenweb harvest recipes this year, so, first, huge thanks to you all for your generosity in posting. Now my question-- I've been looking everywhere for a chutney recipe that includes zucchini (have many baseball bats and DH loves chutney). The only ones I've found are British and I'm not sure about safety 'cause they don't talk about processing, etc. Does this one from Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall looks safe, with 3 cups vinegar? Would I HWB for 20 minutes for pints? Also, could I substitute pears for the apples?

Thank-you very much in advance.


Glutney Chutney

4.4 pounds zucchini, unpeeled if small, peeled if huge, cut into 1cm dice (or use pumpkin later in the season)

4.4 pounds red or green tomatoes, scalded, skinned and roughly chopped (or 1kg plums, stoned and chopped)

4.4 pounds cooking or eating apples, peeled and diced

3 cups onions, peeled and diced

3 cups sultanas or raisins

2 1/4 cups light brown sugar

3 cups white-wine or cider vinegar, plus one cup water

1-3 tsp dried chilli flakes

1 tsp salt

For the spice bag

1 thumb-sized nugget of fresh or dried ginger, roughly chopped

12 cloves

12 black peppercorns

1 (generous) tsp coriander seeds

A few blades of mace

Put the vegetables and fruit in a large, heavy-based pan with the sultanas or raisins, sugar, vinegar and water, chilli flakes and salt.

Make up the spice bag by tying all the spices in a square of muslin or cotton. Add the spice bag to the pan, pushing it into the middle.

Heat the mixture gently, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar, and bring slowly to the boil. Simmer for 2-3 hours, uncovered, stirring regularly to ensure it does not burn on the bottom of the pan. The chutney is ready when it is rich, thick and reduced, and parts to reveal the base of the pan when a wooden spoon is dragged through it. If it starts to dry out before this stage is reached, add a little boiling water.

Pot up the chutney while still warm (but not boiling hot) in sterilised jars with plastic-coated screw-top lids (essential to stop the vinegar interacting with the metal). Leave to mature for at least two weeks - ideally two months - before serving

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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

So basically you want a Tomato-Apple Chutney but you want to add zucchini (low acid) to it and switch the apples to pears, right?

Then I see a couple of problems when comparing it to the approved Tomato-Apple Chutney recipe.

You recipe has less acidic fruits (tomatoes which are borderline anyway and apples), a bit more raisins (acidic) much less sugar, and almost 2x as much low acid ingredients in it (more onions and all the zucchini).

Second your recipe has less vinegar (3 cups vs. 4 cups) plus the vinegar in your recipe is diluted by the water added. Plus there is all the water in the zucchini which would dilute it even more.

Even if you reduced the onions and subbed zucchini for that reduction and the green peppers in the NCHFP one you'd have no way of knowing the effect on the pH. You could increase the vinegar and leave out the water so it is a straight vinegar recipe. That would increase the safety.

Sorry but I'd have to say no to this recipe. It is a do at your own risk recipe for canning. You can freeze it.



Here is a link that might be useful: NCHFP - Tomato Apple Chutney

    Bookmark   August 26, 2012 at 5:30PM
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Thank-you Dave! I was hoping that since it reduces so much it might be okay, but was thinking 'no' might be the answer.

Does anyone out there have a safe chutney with zucchini? You'd think since you can make zucchini RELISH, zucchini would work in some kind of chutney, but I can only find dodgy recipes at the moment.


    Bookmark   August 26, 2012 at 6:26PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

It just isn't something normally associated with chutney apparently. I searched through several books with many chutney recipes - 12 in the Ball Complete Book alone - and not one of them lends itself to using zucchini far as I can tell.

Lots of zucchini chutney recipes come up on the web but none are for canning.

No room to freeze it?


    Bookmark   August 26, 2012 at 6:58PM
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flora_uk(SW UK 8/9)

Try looking for 'marrow' chutney. That's what we call large sized zucchini (which we call courgettes, so google 'courgette chutney' too.) There's no mention of processing in the HFW recipe because we do not process chutney here. (That recipe looks strange to me since it combines cups, kilos and pounds - maybe it has been 'translated' for the US market?) The version I have seen actually specifies over-ripe tomatoes and bruised or shrivelled apples - it is after all called 'Glut'ney.

I have just made the chutney at the link but there are loads on the web. I cannot comment on the safety of any of them based on US criteria but I have never had a problem with any chutney due to the high acid and sugar content and I cannot recall ever seeing any reports of food poisoning from chutney in the British media. I have eaten unprocessed chutney 10 years old and the only issue was shrinkage.

Here is a link that might be useful: Marrow chutney

    Bookmark   August 27, 2012 at 8:16AM
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Thank-you Flora for that link! I like the look of that one better than the HFW recipe -- which I did indeed try to 'translate' into cups, tho' I didn't do it very well. (The original was published in the Guardian in 2007 under 'courgette glutney'). My English in-laws always chutney-ize everything from their garden and it's always delicious. I can never seem to find interesting vegetable chutney recipes published in North America.

Thanks, DAve, for looking in the Ball -- yep, no zucc chutney there. And, while I have you, big thanks too for all your tomato posts -- I've harvested 70 pounds this year and have really relied on the good advice from the 'growing tomatoes' forum.

Chutney search: the 'Marrow Chutney' recipe that Flora's link takes me to has approx 10-11 cups of low acid veg (zucchini and onion) and 2 cups of vinegar. Linda Lou's yummy zucchini relish recipe has 15-16 cups of low acid veg (zucc, onion, garlic, peppers) with 2.5 cups of acid. Both recipes call for salting zucchini overnight to remove water. This sounds like the two recipes are comparable, no, in terms of acidity?

Thanks again -- Amy

    Bookmark   August 27, 2012 at 2:35PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Make it a straight %5 vinegar situation and the safety goes up substantially like I said. But diluted vinegar as in the original recipe is the concern.

And pre-soaking the zucchini to reduce their water content will help greatly - less dilution.


    Bookmark   August 27, 2012 at 4:52PM
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Found one! Zucchini chutney with processing times -- on Gina's site from 2008.

Here is a link that might be useful: Squash Chutney

    Bookmark   August 28, 2012 at 2:08PM
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