Introduction: Orange, Fig and Sage Chutney

On a warm San Francisco Sunday we decided it was necessary to get some of our nice late Summer fruits canned up for the coming Fall. The chutney I ended up with is sweet and tangy, with a nice hint of sage, which is perfect with roast, especially pork.

It's a very simple recipe, and the way I did it, required little more than measuring (sort of), chopping and boiling down the fruits.

Herewith, the recipe.

Hope you enjoy it.

Orange, Fig and Sage Chutney

3 to 4 pounds Oranges, sliced into 8 pieces each
1 lb granulated Sugar
1 basket Figs (about 14 figs), sliced in half
3 sprigs Sage, minced
1/4 cup Lemon juice
Rind of 1/2 Orange
2 cups water, or enough to cover

Make the Chutney:
Put all the ingredients into a large, heavy bottomed pan, making sure there is enough water to cover the fruit.
Set over a medium heat and bring to a boil.
Once the mixture boils, lower the heat to a simmer and stir regularly to keep it from sticking to the pan.
While you are stirring, press down on the orange pieces to release the juice.
As soon as you are satisfied with the texture of your chutney (meaning it will be chunky, good for spreading on meats!), turn off the heat making sure that your jars/lids are ready to be filled.

Boil your jars and lids while the fruit is bubbling away in the other pan .
Take a large wide pan, fill with water, enough to submerge the jars and lids, and place on the heat to boil.
Once the water has boiled, lower to a simmer and keep the jars in the water for five minutes.
When the chutney is ready, remove each jar and lid one by one onto a clean cloth, right side up, to keep them as sterile as possible.

Fill your jars and  seal them:
Ladle chutney into each jar, filling up to the bottom of the neck of the jar, leaving headspace for the sealing to go well.
Wipe down the top of the jar to make sure nothing is sticky on the outside, so that you can seal the jars, and they can be opened again.
Put the lid on and close it as tightly as you can.
Turn the jars upside down and leave to cool. This will seal the jars.

some people re-boil the filled jars, but I opt not to. if you want to, this is the time to do it!

Step 1: Recipe: Follow It As Loosely As You'd Like...


Put all the ingredients, except for the grated orange rind,  into a large, heavy bottomed pan, making sure there is enough water to cover the fruit.

Le Creuset pots and pans are my all-time favorite. I was lucky enough to work in a very nice cookware store in college, so stocked up.

I also wanted to point out the sage here. It gives an earthy undertone to balance out the sweet figs and tangy oranges. I could taste it very strongly when I used the chutney for the pork roast.



Step 2: Sugar. Need I Say More?

Sugar acts as a preservative when you are making jams or other fruit based preserves.  I prefer my jam on the tart side, so opted to reduce the sugar as much as possible. 

I simply pour the sugar right over the top of the fruits and off you go.

Step 3: Lemon Juice

Lemon activates the natural pectin in the fruit. Pectin is what helps thicken the fruit into more of a spread or jam.

You can use the plastic lemon-shaped packaged lemon juice, if it's what you have on hand. I always use that, and it tastes just fine.

Step 4: Cool and Not Too Pricey

These jars are very pretty to look at and my favorite shape. I got two different sizes: .50 liter and 250 ml, mostly because I wasn't sure with the chunky texture how much would fit in each.

In the end, the little jar was enough for a whole pork roast, and plenty to give as a gift.

You can order these on Amazon , or find any suitable jars that you like in your local hardware or grocery store. They average out at about $2.75 a jar, which may sound high, but if you're making gifts, it's a really nice jar to use again and again.

Step 5: Boil the Jars

Boil your jars and lids while the fruit is bubbling away in the other pan .

Take a large wide pan, fill with water, enough to submerge the jars and lids, and place on the heat to boil.

Once the water has boiled, lower to a simmer and keep the jars in the water for five minutes.

When the chutney is ready, remove each jar and lid one by one onto a clean cloth, right side up, to keep them as sterile as possible.

Step 6: Orange Rind

Just after you ladle the chutney into the jars, add a small amount of grated orange rind into each jar before sealing them.  This adds a little fresh zing when you use the lovely finished product.

Step 7: Seal 'em Up

My friend, who learned to make all kinds of preserves from her grandma, said that to seal the jars you need to cool them upside down. It worked like a charm for me, but some people re-boil the filled jars, to seal them. If you want to, this is the time to do it.

Fill your jars and seal them:
Ladle chutney into each jar, filling up to the bottom of the neck of the jar, leaving headspace for the sealing to go well.

Wipe down the top of the jar to make sure nothing is sticky on the outside, so that you can seal the jars, and they can be opened again. Put the lid on and close it as tightly as you can.

Turn the jars upside down and leave to cool. This will seal the jars.

Step 8: What a Lot of Jars

The recipe I shared yields 3 large jars and 4 small jars.

You can easily increase the amount of fruit you use in the recipe, since for me, unlike most people, it's less about exact measurements and more about the feel of the product. A little hard to work this way, so I did my best to supply you with a real recipe.

Step 9: Use It!

Once the chutney was ready to use, I made a really good pork roast which I coated in the chutney and roasted in the oven.
The roast was seared on top of the stove first, then I added root veggies under the meat and coated all of it with the chutney.

Enjoy and keep on cooking!

Comments

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GailC (author)2011-10-19

So you don't take the rind off of the oranges? This sounds spectacular!!!

author
nonreactivepan (author)GailC2011-10-19

nope. it makes it really easy. as long as the rinds are nice and soft, they worked out well in the bottom of the roasting pan. enjoy and thanks for the comment!

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kitchentablescraps (author)2011-09-21

This flavor combination sounds fantastic! Perfect for the fall fig harvest. Can't wait to give it a try!

author

thanks! i love your photos! i'm going to make the origami popcorn soon.

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jessyratfink (author)2011-09-12

Fantastic recipe and photos!

author

Thanks! I'm glad you enjoyed it!

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katydot (author)2011-09-12

Spectacular combo: sage, figs, and orange. Can you just taste it accompaying a juicy-crisp pork loin? Great work!