Thursday, August 26, 2010

Rhubarb Chutney

Did you know that if you harvest rhubarb the plant will regrow (and more than once, I get three growths off my plants - though the stalks get thinner with each) In addition to my plants one of my across the alley neighbors (who has the bigggest rhubarb patch I've ever seen) had offered me free range to harvest her rhubarb. The plot in question is 4 or 5 massive plants that take up a space about 4 foot by 5 foot. Now imagine that regenerating twice over. At least one other neighbor also harvests from her and there's still tons growing back there.

Now I hate to see perfectly good plants go to waste but how much more rhubarb could I deal with? I've already made three types of jam with rhubarb, one pie, and have rhubarb for three more pies frozen in the deep freeze. Chutney came to mind as the perfect solution and I started searching online. I've made this recipe up after looking at three or four different options and verifying the solid to vinegar and sugar ration would be accurate and was off.

Danielle's Rhubarb Chutney

4 cups diced rhubarb
3 cups brown sugar
2 cups apple cider vinegar
2 cups chopped onion (I sliced mine in 1/8" sliced and then cut the sliced into third, short slices really)
1 1/4 cups currants
1 tbsp salt (I use kosher)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/4ish tsp cayenne pepper (mine was a generous 1/4 tsp)

Toss all the ingredients into a non reactive pot (stainless steel or enameled cast iron) and don't freak out when it looks like you'll have no stirring room, the mixtures smooshes down pretty quickly once it heats up.

Give the pot a good stir to mix everything together and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 30ish minutes stirring often.

Pour hot chutney into hot jars. Add lids and screw bands (fingertip tight) and process in a hot water bath for 20 minutes (Calgary altitude).

Makes 3 pints.

**Canning instructions here are not fully detailed, if not an experienced canner, refer to general canning safety rules regarding processing times, etc.

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