In Jan Berry's Art of Preserving, she recommends this chutney as an accompaniment to grilled game hen or chicken. I'm sure peach chutney would be delicious with grilled game hen or chicken. But I like chutney with everything. Of course I like to serve chutney with Indian food, but I also like it on cheese sandwiches; on turkey sandwiches; with eggs: scrambled eggs, boiled eggs, egg salad sandwiches; with meats of all kinds.
You really can't go wrong with chutney. Nor can you go wrong with half-priced, local, organic fruit. When I saw the baskets of peach seconds at the farmers' market on Wednesday, my first thought, having just had success with wild blueberry jam, was peach jam. Y. asked me to make chutney instead and I was easily persuaded. The seconds were not so-called for no reason. They were bitten and bored into and already a bit on the mushy side. I thought if they were puréed they would make an excellent base and then I could get a few firmer peaches to cut into chunks. So that's what I did and I would do it again. The pepitas were not in Ms. Berry's recipe, but they add a nice textural element, and she used raisins where I prefer currants, and she used a red chili and I a habanero. So you can see: there's always room for modification.
Peach and Pepita Chutney
With inspiration from Jan Berry
- 1 1/2 lb. overripe peaches
- 1/2-3/4 lb. firm ripe peaches
- 2 1/2 cups brown sugar
- 1/2 cup currants or raisins
- 2 generous Tbs. grated ginger
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2-4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1 hot pepper, finely chopped
- 1 1/4 cups white vinegar
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2-1 cup roasted salted pumpkin seeds
- Place enough jars to hold 4 to 5 cups of chutney into a large pot along with their corresponding domes and rings. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Turn off heat and let sit in the hot water.
- Peel and roughly chop the overripe peaches. Place them in a blender with about 1/4 cup of the vinegar and process until smooth. Set aside. Blanch the firmer peaches to make them easier to work with and then peel, pit, and cut into small wedges.
- Place peach purée, peach wedges and all remaining ingredients except the pumpkin seeds in a nonreactive saucepan over medium heat. Stir until the mixture comes to a boil, then reduce heat and allow chutney to simmer 30-40 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the pumpkin seeds.
- Ladle chutney into prepared jars, wipe off the rims, and secure the lids. Re-submerge filled jars in the hot water and boil 10 minutes or so to seal. Remove from the water and allow to cool.