Fruity Festive Chutney

Snacks & Dips

Fruity Festive Chutney




Festive Chutney Melissa Hemsley

Get your hands on some fantastic British fruit, get some carols on and get cosy in the kitchen making a pan of this Christmas Chutney. Make some for you and give some jars away. I’ve made today’s chutney with a mix of pears & apples but you can do just pear or apple or whatever seasonal fruit you can find at your grocers. It’s a great chance to use up any bruised or bashed fruit so that nothing in your fruit bowl gets wasted. Be sure to sterilise your jars (I save my old honey / mustard / nut butter jars) and if you can, wait a few weeks for your chutney ‘to mature’ but if you can’t wait, it really is delicious eaten straight away.

As well as with cheese, I love a little kick of chutney with toast and eggs at brunch or a dollop of chutney through a stew or braised vegetables. Or serve on a big party platter like this one.

Recipe makes about 1.2 litres (about 4 x medium jars, 2 for you and 2 to give away). Takes 90 mins with about 30 minutes hands on time.


  1. Gently fry the finely chopped onion in butter in a large saucepan (2 litre capacity) for about 10 minutes stirring from time to time while you get on with everything else until it’s sweet and softened.

  2. Chop the unpeeled fruit into bite size pieces. Juice the orange and get about 1 tbsp worth of zest or peel (not as deep as the white bitter layer though).

  3. Stir the spices through the onions along with a big pinch of sea salt and pepper.

  4. If you’re using dates or larger dried fruit, roughly chop them then add everything to the pan, stir very well, turn up the heat and bring to the boil then immediately turn down to a simmer, lid on, for about 45 minutes, stirring from time to time. Then take the lid off, give the chutney another 15 minutes or so until nice and thick and season to taste – you might want a bit more sweetness or a little more tang from the vinegar or a tiny bit more kick from chilli or spices.

  5. Meanwhile sterilise the jars and lids. Then once the chutney is as you like it, pour the hot chutney in, leave to cool then lids on and store in a cool dark place. Once you’re ready to eat them, keep them stored in the fridge.


1.5kg mix of apples and pears
1 medium orange or 3 clementines
1 onion, finely chopped
1 thumb of ginger, finely grated
300g mix of dried fruit like dates and raisins
2 tbsp butter
300ml apple cider vinegar
200ml maple syrup, to taste
2 tbsp tomato puree
100ml port or brandy (or 400ml red wine)
Sea salt and lots of black pepper, to taste
1 tsp ground turmeric
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
½ tsp cloves or allspice or 1 tsp cinnamon
½ – 1tsp chilli powder or cayenne powder

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