Crab Apple Chutney

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When I was living my very busy life on the North Shore and in my fancy country houses, never in my wildest dreams did I ever think that one day I would be doing so much jam making and baking. For someone who likes to keep cooking simple, I amaze myself! But the reason, of course, is that we have six magnificent fruit trees, and there is no way in the world, I am going to waste the abundance of goodness they provide.

So today, I made Crab Apple Chutney. And it was exciting because I’ve never made it before. It is an easy recipe, but a nightmare prep ~ crab apples really are a nightmare to prepare. A few years back, I made crab apple sauce and swore I’d never core those teensy weensy apples ever again. But just have a look at what we picked ~ how could I ignore these beauties!

crab apples - cropped

Now I didn’t use them all ~ I simply didn’t have the energy to core the lot, so about half went back out to the birds, but what I did use made wonderful chutney. And here is my recipe.

Crab Apple Chutney

I specifically chose this recipe because I didn’t have to do any peeling ~ that would have tipped me over the edge! This chutney has a definite kick to it, and because it’s tart, I made some adjustments (as I always do with any recipe that comes my way), but it’s delicious!

Crab Apple and Plum Chutney

Ingredients: Makes 3 cups

  • 2 cups crab apples, quartered and cored (leave the skins on). You can replace with any apple, if you do not have access to crab apples.
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 TBS grated orange peel
  • 1 TBS fresh ginger

Plus my additions at the end of cooking:

  • 1/4 cup brown sugar because it was very tart ~ if you use apples you may not need it.
  • 1/4 cup of sour plum jam for nice texture ~ I used my own plum jam


Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and stir well. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, covered for 50 minutes. Stir occasionally so it doesn’t burn. After 50 minutes, uncover and simmer a few more minutes over low heat, cooking off any excess liquid. Then stir in the brown sugar and sour plum jam and allow it to cool. It will keep covered for 2 weeks in the fridge. I froze it in small containers so I can take it out as I need it, but if you make a large batch a water bath canning method works well for preserving chutney.

If you make it, hope you enjoy it!

Inara Hawley © 2015

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