Damson Chutney

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  • 3lb damsons
  • 2 heaped teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 small cinnamon sticks
  • 1 oz allspice berries
  • 1 dessert spoon cloves
  • 2 pints malt vinegar
  • 1lb cooking apples, cored but not peeled
  • 3 large onions, peeled
  • 3 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 1lb seedless raisins
  • 1lb dark soft sugar
  • 1lb demerara sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sea salt


  1. Stone the damsons. You have two options here. Slitting them down the natural line of the fruit and twisting out the stones or the other is to stew them with 1/2 pint of the vinegar and then wearing rubber gloves remove the stones as they separate from the flesh. Both methods are tedious, but the latter is probably faster, provided you don't miss any!
  2. Put the apples and onions in a food processor and finely chop.
  3. Place the stoned fruit in a preserving pan with the apple and onion.
  4. Add the garlic, ginger, raisins, sugar and the remaining vinegar.
  5. Put the cinnamon, allspice and cloves in a muslin bag and tie with a bit of string to the handle of the pan and suspend in the mixture.
  6. Bring to the boil, lower heat and simmer very gently for 2-3 hours stirring occasionally. Stir more often towards the end to avoid sticking on the bottom.
  7. When the vinegar has disappeared and and the chutney has thickened to a soft consistency add to warmed jars.
  8. Fill the jars as full as possible and cover with a wax disk and a vinegar proof lid.
  9. Label jars when cold and store for 3 months before eating

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