I bought a heap of eggplant at a farm the other day. I wanted to make a chutney and found this one on the Taste site. I made it today and have to say it's delicious even without a months' standing time to mature! Prep time doesn't include allowing the eggplant and salt to sit for an hour
- 1 kg eggplant, cut into 2cm cubes
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 2 small red capsicums, deseeded, cut into 2cm pieces
- 250 g brown onions, halved, cut into thin wedges
- 150 g dates, fresh, pitted, roughly chopped
- 500 ml white wine vinegar (2 cups)
- 250 g brown sugar (1 1/4 cups, firmly packed)
- 2 small red chilies, finely sliced
- 2 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
- Place the eggplant in a large colander, sprinkle with the salt and toss to combine. Place the colander in the sink and stand for 1 hour for the eggplant to degorge. Rinse the eggplant well and pat dry with paper towel.
- Combine the eggplant, capsicum, onions, dates, vinegar, brown sugar, chillies, garlic and cumin seeds in a large heavy-based saucepan (about 4-litre/16-cup capacity). Stir over high heat until the sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil.
- Reduce heat to medium-low and boil gently, stirring occasionally, for 1 1/2 hours or until all the excess liquid has evaporated and the mixture is thick. Stir the chutney more frequently towards the end of cooking.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat and stand for 2-3 minutes. Stir and then ladle into hot sterilised jars. Seal tightly and turn upside down for 2 minutes. Invert and allow to cool. Label, date and store in a cool dark place for at least 1 month before using.
- Serve with aged cheddar on crusty bread, with Indian curries, on roast beef sandwiches, with roast vegetables or pork, or add a spoonful to chunky vegetable soups.
- This chutney will store in a cool, dark place for 6 months. Once opened, keep in the fridge for up to 8 weeks.