Apple Chutney

Originally from the Preservation Society book but I tweaked it a bit, so getting a full post so I remember what I did.

I did two variants. The main one with Xeres vinegar, which tastes like something I will use anywhere onion jam would be used (in a grilled cheese or a burger comes to mind).

The second is a balsamic variant which I have dreams of using on some baked brie with walnuts…

Still, go buy the book!

Yield : 6 half pints

2 birds eyes peppers
3 cloves garlic
900g apples (cortland, spartan, empire, snow globe, gala)
450g onions
170g raisin*
550g brown sugar
1 1/2 table spoon salt
30 ml grated fresh ginger
10 ml allspice
10 ml cloves
10 ml black peppercorns
10 ml ground tumeric
2 ml dry mustard
375 ml apple cider vinegar
375 ml xeres vinegar **

Balsamic Variant :
* A bit less raisins, add dried apricots (cut in small pieces)
** Balsamic vinegar.

1. Grind the spices together.

2. Put the onions and apples through a food processor and chop finely. Transfer to a large pot and add the vinegar.

3. Finely chop the garlic and thai peppers. Add to the pot along with the raisins.

4. Add the rest of the spices.

The Balsamic variant will look darker like this :

5. Turn the heat on medium until a slow boil form. Turn the heat down and simmer for 1 hour.

The balsamic version will start to look outright Halloween worthy. I added a finely minced jalapeno along the way to this one, as the sugar was getting too dominant.

6. Scald the jars. Fill with hot chutney. Leave 1/4″ headspace. Process for 10 minutes.

And the darker balsamic.


Fish Soup

A delicious and light soup. Any firm white fish would work, just make sure that you get something that stays firm as  it cooks..

Ingredients :
1 cup orange juice
2 cups fish stock
1-2 cloves of garlic
1 onion
1/2 fennel bulb
1/2 yellow pepper
1/2 red pepper
1 thaï chili
3-4 tomatoes
1 lb of monk fish
Zest of 1/2 orange
2 pinches of saffron
salt and pepper
olive oil


1. First peel the tomatoes. Cut an “x” shape cut at the bottom of each tomato.

2. Drop the cut tomato in boiling water for 30-40 seconds.

3. Transfer the tomato into cold water. The peel should be tearing away from the flesh on it’s own.

4. Remove the skin. Repeat for all tomatoes and set aside.

5. Drop the fish stock in a pot and bring to a simmer then set aside.

6. Deal with the fennel. Rinse any dirt from the outside.

7. Cut those antenna like growth. The fluffy green things are edible if you want to keep them.

8. Cut the bulb in half. Remove the outside leaves and the bitter core.

9. In a large soup pot, warm about 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the onion, finely diced and sweat for a few minutes.

10. Finely dice the fennel.

11. Add the fennel to the onions and sweat for a few minutes.

12. Add the diced bell peppers to the onions and fennel and allow to cook down for about 2 minutes.

13. Peel and dice the potato. Skin and mince the garlic. Add to the pot.
Allow the potatoes to warm up with the other vegetables for a few minutes then deglaze with the orange juice. Allow the juice to reduce by 1/3.

14. During that time, dice the tomatoes (they should have cooled down enough to handle)

15. Add the tomatoes to the pot and stir them in,

16. Add the orange zest and saffron. Cut the chili pepper open and drop that in as well.

17.  Add the fish stock. Bring to a simmer,

18.  Cover and cook until the potatoes are done (about 15-20 minutes). Fish out the bird’s eye chili. You can use the base as is or blend it down. I wanted something smooth so I blended it down.

19 .Retrieve the fish from the fridge. Remove any and all bones.

20. Cut the fish into bite sized cubes.

21. Gently drop into the simmering soup. Poach the fish in the soup for about 10 minutes. When the fish is ready it will firm up. Serve warm. Eat with some crusty bread.

Pulled Pork – sauce

I have been playing with alternative sauces for the Pulled Pork recipe I posted a while back. The original was a bit too acid for my taste. This is my new favorite sauce for this use..,

3 jalapenos, seeds removed, diced
2 tomatoes, diced
1 onion, diced
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup apple cider vinegar
1 small can diced tomatoes
2 tablespoon of the dry rub used for the pork
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce



1. In a sauce pot, heat the olive oil then add the onions and jalapenos. Cook until the onions are translucent.

2. Add the tomatoes, canned tomatoes, vinegar, Worcestershire, brown sugar, reserved spices and honey. Simmer until the sauce has reduced and the tomatoes start falling apart.

3. Blend until no piece of vegetable remains. Add salt to taste. Mix with the meat to taste.

Coconut Soup

A thick rich Thai style coconut soup, very easy to prepare and very, very filling. It’s also very versatile and could accommodate more vegetables (bell peppers, sprouts, etc.).

Fish sauce is very strong, so add gradually while tasting. It mellows out a bit as it cooks, but still get a feel for it as you go. Adjust the spice levels to your liking too.

I might experiment with less coconut milk to make a lighter version.

3 Thai chilies, seeds removed
2 stalks of lemongrass
2 cans of coconut milk
2 cups of chicken broth
1 package of rice noodles
2 carrots, shredded
1 tea spoon of curry spices
1/2 tea spoon fresh ginger
2 table spoon fish sauce
Juice and Zest of 2 limes
8 chicken, boneless, skinless and cut in bite sizes.
Salt and pepper



1. Spoon some of the coconut cream from the top of one of the can into a large soup pot. Add the  curry spices and heat until fragrant.

2. Add the rest of the coconut milk, the lemon grass stalks, peppers, chicken broth and ginger. Bring to boil. Be careful, the coconut milk will bubble up and try to boil over, like regular milk.

3. Reduce the heat to a simmer and add the chicken.

4. When the chicken is cooked, add the rice noodles, the lime zest and juice and the fish sauce. Adjust the seasoning as you go.

5. Once the noodles are fully soft and almost transparent ladle into bowls and serve hot. You can add green onions as decoration and added texture.