Support your local charities

In towns and villages all over Britian, you will find people growing vegetables, whether it be on an allotment, in their back gardens or in grow bags on the patio. If you are a gardener you will be well aware of gluts! Gluts, for the uninitiated, are those piles of fruits and veg that you just cannot eat, pickle or turn into jam. This occurs not because they have gone bad, but because you just can’t take anymore. You have eaten enough, you have binged on courgettes, lettuce or tomatoes for the last month and are heartly sick of them.

Chutney, home cooking, fresh vegetables, clever cooking, allotments,
Support your local charities.

If visited Appledore, North Devon, for your holidays this year, you may have noticed the house above as you meander down the hill into the beautiful village. The two brothers who live there, spend hours on their allotment, each year, tilling, weeding, sowing & planting, producing copious amounts of fresh fruit and veg. As they grow more than they can eat, they display their wares outside their house, asking for donations to North Devon Children’s Hospice, in return for their fresh, unadulterated pro What can be more perfect than to know you are eating fresh, homegrown veg and also supporting such a worthy cause?

Chutney, home cooking, fresh vegetables, clever cooking, allotments,
Freshly made, smoky, spicy chutney

Have you ever read the ingredients list on the back of a jar of shop bought chutney? It may or may not suprise you to know that the first listed ingredient is sugar! – ingredients have to be listed in quantity order. – Are you surprised to know that you are eating a jar of sugar, with some veg thrown in! and you thought it was one of your seven a day. Well, having purchased my fresh Appledore grown fruit a veg, I set about creating a smoky, spicy chutney, in which the main ingredient is not sugar. (Recipe below)

Chutney, home cooking, fresh vegetables, clever cooking, allotments,
Freshly chopped chutney ingredients.

Appledore Chutney

Makes 4kg GF, DF, V, Vegan Allergens: chilli, celery. Time taken 20mins + cooking. Equipment: Large Saucepan, Sterilised Jars

  • 2kg Red Tomatoes. Cored & Chopped
  • 1kg Mixed Peppers. Deseeded
  • 1kg Carrots, grated.
  • 5 Sticks Celery. Chopped
  • 0.5kg Onions.Peeled & Quarted
  • 1kg Cooking Apples. Cored & Chopped
  • 4 Cloves of garlic. Peeled
  • 3 Fresh Chillies. Deseeded
  • 500ml Balsamic Vinegar
  • 500ml Malt Vinegar
  • 1kg Soft light brown sugar
  • 2tbspns Sea Salt
  • 2tbspns Paprika
  • 2tbspns Ground Cumin
  • 2tbspns English Mustard
  • 2tbspns Worcestershire Sauce
  • 150ml Tomato Paste
  • Bunch of fresh Thyme. Tied together.


Place onions, chillies and garlic in a food processor & pulse until finely chopped. Place in large saucepan with the rest of the fruit & veg.

Pour over the malt vinegar. Cover & simmer until the onions are soft.

Add the rest of the ingredients. Stir over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved. Cook uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the relish has a jam like consistency. Remove the thyme bunch. Pot & cover. Leave for a couple of weeks to mature.

Chutney, home cooking, fresh vegetables, clever cooking, allotments,
The heats on.

Never going to make your seven a day, but it is homemade, from fresh locally grown fruit & veg. Has a lower sugar content than shop bought tracklements AND doesn’t contain additives or preservatives.

Just think how good they will look lined up on your kitchen shelf. Also how good you will feel knowing the money you spent on the produce will go to a good cause and not to a greedy Supermarket. Enjoy.

P.S. I do not peel my fruit and veg as it adds fibre to the finished chutney.

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