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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Relishing Sunday

I told you that I bought a big bucket of ripe tomatoes last week - well I made them into relish today.  It was a perfect Sunday, just pottering around with the lovely smell of cooking relish permeating the house.
I'm a bit of a sucker for kitchen equipment - I have lots of old and new gear and love a new toy, but one of the most useful things I have in my kitchen is the grottiest.  An old friend showed me  how to funnel jam and relish into the jars - just cut the top off an old plastic vinegar bottle.  I made this gorgeous item years ago and it's lived in the cupboard coming out on special preserving days.  It doesn't win any prizes for glamour, but it sure as hell wins the practicality prizes!
I made 4 times the quantity of the recipe in the old Edmonds Cookbook - an old Kiwi standard!
It made 24 jars - that's enough for a jar every three weeks or so for a year and a good few to give away.
1.5 kg tomatoes, blanched, skinned and quartered (I skip the blanching, skinning and anything fussy)
4 onions, quartered (I actually like mine chopped a bit finer than this
2 tablespoons salt
2 cups brown sugar (there's no way around this - you need to use real sugar - it acts as a preservative.  You can, however, use raw sugar, but there's little difference)
2 1/4 cups malt vinegar
3 chillies
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1 tablespoon curry powder
3 or more tablespoons maize cornflour (so it's OK for wheat free friends)
Another 1/2 cup malt vinegar

Put tomatoes and onions into a non-metallic bowl.  Sprinkle with salt and leave for 12 hours.  Drain off all liquid formed.  Put vegetables, sugar, first measure of vinegar and chillies into preserving pan.  Boil gently for one and a half hours, stirring frequently.  Mix mustard, curry and cornflour with second measure of vinegar and mix to a smooth paste.  Stir into relish.  Boil for a good 5 minutes.  Pack into sterilized jars.  Makes about 4 x 350ml jars.
illy & Mojo had a sleep-in and didn't get out of bed till almost 1 o'clock.  So of course the bed remained unmade until they'd finished with it.  They refused even to open their eyes for this photo.
We went into town late in the afternoon and hung the last sign.  Apologies for the awful photo, quite apart from the fact that you can see my finger, you can't see the gorgeous copper roses that the Toy Boy made to adorn the top.

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