The wonderful colorful (and delicious) foods of autumn are one of the high notes that make the impending winter bearable. Pumpkins and colorful squash are the highlights of these foods, but what to do with them? One great way is to turn them into a chutney which is a great way to preserve and store all their greatness.
A spiced roast pumpkin chutney is one such way. By firstly roasting the pumpkin or squash with brown sugar and hot spices, the pumpkin takes on all the flavors as well as caramelizing the vegetable. This when added to the chutney base of further spices, vinegar, ginger and apples, creates a rich, thick preserve which works beautifully with meats, game and cheeses. Save it for the Christmas or Boxing Day table too, you will be pleased you did.
- 4 cups/750g peeled pumpkin or squash (cubed)
- 2 teaspoons curry powder
- 2 tablespoons soft brown sugar
- Pinch of salt and pepper
- 1 1/2 cups/250g raisins
- 1 1/2 cups/250g light soft brown sugar
- 1 1/2 cups/250g cooking apples (peeled and cut into chunks)
- 1 1/2 cups/250g onion (roughly chopped)
- 2 cups/450 ml apple cider vinegar
- 1 inch/2.5 cm fresh ginger (peeled and grated)
- Pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 375F/190C/Gas 5
- Line a large baking tray or roasting tin with a sheet of greaseproof paper.
- Put the cubes of pumpkin or squash onto the tray, sprinkle over the curry powder and the sugar followed by the salt and pepper. Gently roll the cubes of pepper around, so all are coated with the spices.
- Roast in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes until the pumpkin or squash is nicely browned and caramelized but still slightly firm. Put to one side.
- While the pumpkin is roasting, you can prepare the rest of the chutney.
- Put all the remaining ingredients into a large stock or saucepan. Just pile them in, in the order of the recipe and gently stir with a wooden spoon.
- Place the pan on the stove top and bring to a gentle boil (do not rush this process or you risk burning the chutney). Once it reaches a gentle boil, let it merrily plop away for 20 minutes giving it a stir from time to time. The chutney will begin to thicken and will smell be divine, so be prepared.
- Once the pumpkin is cooked and cooled slightly, add it to the chutney. Lower the heat, because once added you do not want to cook it into a mush, rather keeping little chunks of the pumpkin.
- Cook for a further 15 minutes or until the chutney is thick and glossy and the pumpkin still holding up.
- Remove the pan from the heat, give a stir and allow to stand for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile, sterilise 6 x 1 lb (450g) glass or Kilner jars.
- Using a funnel or a heatproof jug, fill the jars to the top of the neck of the jar. Cover with a lid or with a Kilner, rubber ring and clip. Leave to cool.
- The chutney will keep in the store cupboard for up to one year. Once opened, store in the refrigerator.
Alternatives to Pumpkin:
Pumpkin is lovely but you can use any other squash in the same way in this chutney recipe.