The Rowdy Chowgirl
Makes about 1-1/2 quarts; recipe can easily be doubled
3 pounds ripe tomatoes, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup thinly sliced garlic (about one large head)
1/2 cup finely julienned peeled ginger
1-1/2 cups malt or cider vinegar
1/2 to 1 cup raisins
2 cups turbinado/raw sugar, or half light brown and half white
1 to 3 teaspoons cayenne pepper (or to taste)
1 small cinnamon stick
4 whole cloves
1-1/2 to 2 teaspoons salt
1. Open a few windows. Place all the ingredients (start with the smaller amounts given) in a heavy nonreactive pot and bring to a boil, stirring so everything gets well combined. Lower the heat and simmer gently, stirring occasionally, until the chutney reaches the consistency of a soft jam. This will probably take at least two hours; you can speed things up by increasing the heat, but then you’ll need to remember to stir much more frequently. Particularly once it starts getting thick it can burn in a flash.
2. Adjust the balance of sugar, salt and vinegar while the chutney is still warm. Add more cayenne if you’d like it hotter.
3. To can for shelf-storage, sterilize four or five 8-ounce jars. Bring the chutney back to a rolling boil for two minutes, then proceed with your favorite canning method. Otherwise, it will keep for a few weeks in the refrigerator.