Pineapple Chutney

I don’t know about you, but I just love cooking chutneys and jams. Perhaps it’s something I inherited from my mother, who always seemed to be preserving or making marmalade.

Mrs Uma Balachandran from UK writes:

“Dear Kurma Das, In this winter season the pineapples are sour to eat as raw. I like to make chutney. Kindly write me a pineapple chutney recipe.”

My reply:

Here’s a recipe from my first cookbook. However, I do find that ripe and sweet pineapples make a much better chutney than unripe. I guess it depends on your definition of chutney. This is definitely a spicy, jam-like chutney, as opposed to a raw, lightly seasoned one.

fresh pineapples for chutney:

I like to use the Bethonga or ‘Roughie‘ variety of pineapple grown in Northern regions of Australia. They are smaller and have intensely golden flesh and are very very sweet and flavoursome. Avoid pale insipid pineapples.

Pineapple Chutney

Pineapple chutney should be “too hot to bear, but too sweet to resist”. This recipe yields about 2 cups.

3 tablespoons ghee (or oil)
2 teaspoons cumin seeds
4 broken dried red chilies, sliced fresh chilies, or as desired
1 large, sweet and ripe pineapple, peeled, cored and diced
1/2 – 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
2/3 cup – 1 cup (depending on the size of the pineapple) raw sugar
1/3 cup raisins

Heat the ghee or oil in a 2-quart/litre heavy-based saucepan over moderate heat until it is hot but not smoking.

Saute the cumin seeds in the hot ghee until they slightly darken. Add the chilies and cook until golden brown, or aromatic using fresh chilies.

Add the pineapple pieces, ground cinnamon, and cloves. Gently boil the chutney, stirring occasionally, over moderate heat until the pineapple becomes soft and the juice evaporates. Stir constantly as the preparation nears completion. This stage can take some time since pineapple does not easily break down.

When the saucepan is dry and the pineapple starts to stick on the bottom, add the sugar and raisins and cook until thick and jam-like. Serve at room temperature.

Posted by Kurma on 19/12/11; 10:15:45 AM

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