Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Blueberry Chutney

A couple weeks ago my friend Al sent me a link to a contest for food bloggers which was sponsored by the Blueberry Council.  I was really excited but between having a terrible summer-time cold (they're the worst) and work I missed the deadline and never entered the contest. 

But that left me with a list of blueberry ideas I had come up with, and some of the ideas were just too intriguing to me that I simply have to make them.  So here is the first idea on the list, blueberry chutney.

I love the combination of flavors in this chutney, sweet, fragrant with ginger, orange and cinnamon, and spicy from jalapeno pepper.  I had intended to make this as a condiment to be used in other recipes for the contest, which I will also blog, but I am presenting the chutney here as a stand alone recipe.  I am very happy with the result of this funky spicy blueberry jam.  I intend to use it to make goat cheese and blueberry chutney springrolls as well as a condiment on a blueberry banh mi (vietnamese roast pork sandwich).  I also think this could make a lovely last minute glaze for chicken or pork roasted in the oven.

This is not a difficult recipe, but it does require a rather hefty time commitment since it must cook slowly over low heat in order to thicken the chutney without burning it.  Your reward, aside from 2 cups of amazing chutney, is that as it slowly simmers on the stove top, it will infuse the air with the scent of ginger, blueberries and cinnamon.  Your entire house will smell amazing!

Blueberry Chutney
makes about 2 cups

1/2 onion diced
2 cloves garlic
1 jalapeno (not seeded)
1 walnut-sized piece of fresh ginger
peel of 1 large orange, removed with a vegetable peeler
1/4 tsp dried red pepper flakes
3 cups fresh blueberries
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

In a food processor combine onion, garlic, jalapeno, ginger, and orange peel.  Process until finely minced.  Transfer mixture to a saucepan and heat over high heat until ginger and garlic begin to sweat.  Add remaining ingredients and cook until mixture comes to a boil.  Reduce heat to low and cook uncovered for 2- 2.5 hours, stirring every 15 minutes until mixture is very thick like jam.  Transfer to airtight container and refrigerate until ready to use. Will keep one month if refrigerated.

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