We’re in the midst of apple season, and while I love all of the sweet ways to use the fruit — pies, crisps, turnovers — I’m also fond of apple’s savory side.
Apples lend themselves to being sautéed then simmered with a splash of cream and served over pork or chicken. They’re delicious grated into a crunchy Asian-style slaw with sesame oil. And I like them made into vinegary chutney to be spooned over ham or crostini with a rich decadent cheese such as Brie.
Chutney is simple to make and easy to vary. The recipe below uses garlic, ginger and red pepper flakes. You could also add finely chopped rosemary, jalapeño, whole cloves or star anise. If you have a few pears hanging around, throw them in, too.
Just be sure to use crisp flavorful apples such as Gala or Granny Smith. Softer apples like Golden Delicious or Lodi will turn to mush in the long cooking time.
Makes about 3 cups
Cool the chutney and keep it in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
11/2 cups apple cider vinegar
11/2 cups sugar
2 pounds crisp apples, peeled, cored, cut into 1/2-inch dice
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 2-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled, grated
11/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
11/2 cups golden raisins
Stir vinegar and sugar in a heavy medium-size nonaluminum pot over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Add all remaining ingredients except raisins. Simmer 15 minutes. Stir in raisins. Simmer an additional 15 to 20 minutes or until most of liquid evaporates and apples are tender, but not falling apart.