September has been fun in the garden, collecting crab apples, eating and cooking apples and plums from our trees. I’ve also harvested lovely Tomatoes from my five plants from which we’ve been eating daily in salads with our home grown lettuce. Laterly I’ve made pasta sauce to freeze. In the fields surrounding Cople, on my dog walks, we’ve enjoyed picking Elderberries and Blackberries. The Sloes are ripening nicely too, although we’ve still got plenty of Sloe gin to drink and give away.
I love the look of the hedges jumbled with tumbling blackberries and rosehips. Today the sun is shining, the tractors are ploughing the fields, the crows and blackbirds sit on bare branches watching over the landscape; hares dart about and deer run in and out of the furrows and hedges around the fields. Every day has a story to tell.
Harvest Chutney Recipe
300g onions chopped
700g plums, stoned and quartered,
600g cooking apples
600ml organic red wine vinegar
125g dried cranberries
350g soft light brown sugar
1tsp all spice
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp coriander
A pinch of sea salt
A ppinch of chilli flakes
Makes 6 x 340g jars
Keeps for 12 months
Put all the ingredients into a preserving pan and bring slowly to the boil, stirring. Make sure that the sugar has dissolved.
2. Lower the heat and simmer for 1 1/2 hours or until the chutney has reduced, stirring frequently.
3. When the chutney is ready, check by drawing a wooden spoon across the surface, it should leave a trail.
4. Pot the chtney into sterilized jars, label and date and put jars into a cool dark place for at least a few weeks before eating.