Cooking has been a struggle these last five months. I'm still trying to learn how to eat without eating any solanums. There are things that I miss terribly. Pizza was one of them. I've got a pizza that is sauceless that I like, but it still isn't the same as one with sauce. Then there are the sloppy joes. I love sloppy joes, but they are of course covered in tomato sauce. I tried making ones with a more of a Chinese base. It was good, but still not the same.
Last week I so wanted to eat Mexican food. I LOVE Mexican food, but I can tell you that it is impossible to eat Mexican without tomatoes, tomatillos or chilies. They are so integral in the cooking. I used to make my own tortillas on a regular basis. I don't remember the last time I made them. My black beans have been languishing in my cupboard since they were picked in the fall.
I was looking for a black bean and squash soup to make, but ran across a recipe on the Food Network. Hmm black bean and squash tacos without tomatoes. I had to try them. They turned out quite good (with a few tweeks). Though the pickled shallots (I made pickled onions) that the recipe called for were nice, it wasn't quite as good as salsa. But it did have a bit of a kick and was a nice compliment to the rest of the meal. It got me to thinking. How could chutney taste on this dish?
So on Tuesday I whipped up some apple chutney. I wanted one with a lot of onions.
Daphne's Apple Chutney
- 1/2 c cider vinegar
- 1/4 c brown sugar
- 1 apple diced
- 1 red garden onion sliced cut thinly
- 1/4 c golden raisins
- T mustard seed
- 2 cloves garden garlic
- T ginger wine slices **
- 2 T ginger wine**
- 1/4 t cinnamon, cardamom, cumin, black pepper, and salt
- Pinch of allspice
Mix it all up in a pot and cook until the apples are soft, about 20 mins. I keep wondering if I should have left the mustard until the end.
** I had never heard of ginger wine until I started reading Norma's blog. I used to get a huge hunk of ginger, grate it and freeze it in teaspoon and tablespoon lumps. It worked OK that way. I always had ginger on hand. But it was downstairs in the freezer in the basement, which is a pain to get when you are in the middle of the making something. The texture left something to be desired but the taste was good. I'm hoping I like Norma's method better. I sliced my ginger on my mandolin very very thinly and put it in a quart canning jar with some sake. I wonder how long it will last?
The result was that it wasn't as good as the pickled onions. The reason was it was too sweet for the dish (and I don't make a very sweet chutney) and it didn't have enough of the vinegar bite to it. I like the idea of a chutney, but it has to be a bit more like pickled fruit and less like chutney. And the raisins have to go. I didn't like them in the dish at all. My next attempt will be with some mangos. Now I know apples and squash go well together. Are mangoes and squash as good?
Robin over at The Gardener of Eden hosts Thursday's Kitchen Cupboard. So head on over and join in.