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Best Beetroot Chutney and the Benefits of Using Glass

Beetroot Chutney

Preserves, Sponsored Post | 4th October 2016 | By

In this season of abundance and mellow fruitfulness, my mind very quickly turns to thoughts of preserving. I was just thinking it was about time I made some apple chutney, when a bunch of beautiful beetroot turned up in my veg box. My plans did an about turn and I ended up making the best beetroot chutney ever. As I spooned my finished chutney into jars, I couldn’t help but give thanks for glass.

Glass is my absolute favourite material for food storage. It appeals to my thrifty nature; it’s attractive, reusable and doesn’t leach nasty chemicals into your vittles. When it comes to making jams, pickles or chutneys, it’s unthinkable to use anything else. The preserves shine through the glass and if, like me, you’re not always good at labelling, you can pretty much tell what’s in a glass jar without having to take off the lid and spoil the contents. When I made this beetroot chutney the other day, it never occurred to me to use anything else.

Beetroot Chutney

Friends of Glass have this to say on the subject and I couldn’t agree more. “A glass jam jar is a simple, beautiful and practical design that won’t deteriorate no matter how many times it is re-used or recycled. Because glass is inert, the jam jar keeps its contents fresher for longer and when put into the recycling bank, it takes as little as 30 days for it to be returned to the shelf as a new jar – making it a perfect role model for the circular economy.”

When I was young one of my uncles had a bottle washing factory. Way back then, all drinks came in glass bottles, which were washed and re-used again and again. Fizzy drink bottles had a refundable deposit and hunting around in the streets and hedges for bottles was a major earner for us kids. It seems rather sad that this practice faded away, that bottle washing factories went out of business and that so many drinks now come in plastic bottles. Rant over.

Glass jars were first used for preserving foodstuffs in the early 19th Century. Before the invention of the screw top lid, they were sealed with wax. Here’s a rather interesting timeline from Friends of Glass on the development of the glass jar.

Friends of Glass Timeline

The beetroot chutney is easy to make and it keeps for ages. It’s important to use sterilised glass jars when preserving. I wash them well in warm soapy water, then dry them out in a warm oven (150℃) for 15 minutes. If you have a dishwasher, you can run them through that instead. To sterilise the lids, I boil them in water for a few minutes, then leave to dry before sealing the jar’s contents.

My favourite accompaniment to cheese is a good homemade chutney and this beetroot chutney lives up to the best of them. Its earthy tones are livened up with fruity notes and just a hint of spicy cinnamon and warming chilli. I used my own homemade blackcurrant vinegar along with apple cider vinegar to give a fruity flavour, but any fruit vinegar should work.

Beetroot Chutney

Fill some pretty glass jars with beetroot chutney and attach an attractive label and you have a unique homemade gift. In my experience, homemade preserves are appreciated far more than something hastily bought online or on the high street. Autumnal chutney makes a particularly good Christmas gift as it has a few months to mature and will taste its best in December and January.

Best Beetroot Chutney
Yields 4
A fruity warming chutney that makes an excellent partner to cheese.
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
1 hr
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
40 min
Total Time
1 hr
Ingredients
  1. 600g beetroot - scrubbed, topped & tailed - grated
  2. 1 large red onion - diced
  3. 100g golden granulated sugar
  4. 150ml cider vinegar
  5. 100ml blackcurrant vinegar (or other fruit vinegar) or 50g more vinegar + 50g sugar + 1 cinnamon stick
  6. 1 large red chilli - seeds removed and finely chopped
  7. 2 cloves garlic - finely chopped
  8. ¼ tsp sea salt
  9. good grinding black pepper
Instructions
  1. Place all the ingredients in a large pan and bring to the boil.
  2. Simmer for about 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. The chutney is ready when the beetroot is cooked and the mixture has thickened.
  3. Pour into warm sterilised jars. Tap the jars to remove air pockets. Cover with waxed discs, then screw on the lids and label.
Notes
  1. Store in a cool dark place for up to 1 year.
  2. Best left for at least a month before eating.
  3. Keep in the fridge once opened.
Tin and Thyme http://tinandthyme.uk/

 Other chutney recipes you might like

Thanks to Friends of Glass for sponsoring this post. I was not expected to write a positive review and all opinions are, as always, my own. Thanks to my readers for supporting the brands that help to keep Tin and Thyme blythe and blogging.

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Comments

  1. Leave a Reply

    Elizabeth
    4th October 2016

    A gorgeous sounding recipe and I agree with regards to glass. I remember returning bottles for pennies too – I saved up for my first bike with bottles!

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      4th October 2016

      Wow, you did brilliantly well to get a bike. I think mine all went on sweets 😉

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      4th October 2016

      It really does Angie. I’m running out of the vinegar now as this was last year’s and I didn’t get any blackcurrants this year to make more.

  2. Leave a Reply

    Kavey
    4th October 2016

    I love making chutney so much! I started off using my grandfather’s recipes and have since created many of my own. Once I understood the balance of tart and sweet, and the way that sugar and vinegar work to preserve food, I felt more confident with making my own recipes. I am happy to read about glass storage as that’s always been my preference too.

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      4th October 2016

      How wonderful to have your grandfathers chutney recipes Kavey. My grandfather was in to making all sorts of country wines – birch leaf wine and all sorts. But he never left the know-how or recipe behind him. I have most of my staples stored in glass jars – love em.

  3. Leave a Reply

    Shelley
    4th October 2016

    I love beets and I love chutney, I can’t wait to try this.

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      4th October 2016

      I’m rather smitten with it at the moment Shelley. Do let me know how you get on if you do make it.

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      5th October 2016

      Thanks Jemma. I think this might have been the first time I’ve every tried it too – I’m glad I did 🙂

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      7th October 2016

      Thanks Becca. I can attest it goes brilliantly well with crumbly mature cheddar, also Cornish brie 🙂

  4. Leave a Reply

    Kate Ford
    5th October 2016

    What a beautiful deep purple, that looks stunning and your labels and jar tops are so pretty. Totally with you on glass, trying to gradually swap all my old tupperware for lidded glass storage instead, so much better.

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      7th October 2016

      Thanks Kate. I’ve always used glass jars for storage, but tupperware or similar still seems more practical for the freezer.

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      7th October 2016

      I’m not sure why beetroot chutney isn’t more of a “thing”, it’s fabulous stuff 🙂

  5. Leave a Reply

    Sarah from Lavender Life
    5th October 2016

    It looks delicious! And the glass jars are awesome! I make my own hot sauce every couple of months, and I use similar jars to store them. So much more practical than plastic containers 🙂

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      7th October 2016

      Definitely Sarah. You’ve got me interested in your hot sauce now. I make my own chilli sauce too, but always interested to see others.

  6. Leave a Reply

    Nayna Kanabar
    6th October 2016

    I adore glass bottles and recycle most of mine , usually use them to store things in, serve drinks, use ad vases or nick nak holders and use them as tea light holders too,

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      7th October 2016

      Yes, I’m with you on all of that Nayna. I know a friend who collects them for birthdays and uses them as tea light holders for grand displays.

  7. Leave a Reply

    Manda
    8th October 2016

    I wonder if your sponsors can help me find a source for jam jar lids. The jars last forever but the sealing lids do not and although I’ve made feeble efforts to locate suppliers it’s been unsuccessful. It is possible to use those old fashioned plastic covers with elastic bands but I like knowing there’s a vacuum seal on my pots. Any ideas?

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      8th October 2016

      Hi Manda. I know for sure you can get good sealing lids, but I don’t know where from. I’m an inveterate re-user of lids. I’m sure Friends of Glass would be able to help you though. Do give them a try. Here’s their e-mail address: info@friendsofglass.com

  8. Leave a Reply

    Jacqueline Meldrum
    8th October 2016

    I’ve not made chutney for such a long time. I am totally drooling over yours. I really must start making more of an effort. there’s nothing quite as nice as homemade preserves.

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      8th October 2016

      Thanks Jac. I’m compelled to make preserves. I often have bread and cheese at lunchtime, but it just wouldn’t be right without some sort of chutney or pickles to go with it.

  9. Leave a Reply

    nadia
    10th October 2016

    Ooo beetroot chutney, can’t say I’ve ever tried that! Sounds delicious, especially with crackers and cheese 😀 I love glass too for all the reasons you mentioned 😉

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      11th October 2016

      Thanks Nadia. I’ve always been suspicious of plastic in terms of food storage. It gets increasingly hard to get away from these day, but I use glass where I can.

  10. Leave a Reply

    Janice
    13th October 2016

    I love beetroot chutney, it seems to have the perfect combination of sweet and sour flavours to go with so many different meals.

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      13th October 2016

      So true Janice. I’ve just harvested our pitiful crop of beetroot, but I’m hoping there might just be enough to make another batch.

  11. Leave a Reply

    Friends of Glass
    27th October 2016

    Hello all and thanks Choclette for the brilliant beetroot chutney recipe. The team here are going to definitely give it a go! If you love glass, please do become a Friend of Glass – just go to the website and sign up. It’s free and will help us lobby to keep glass packaging as a choice on the supermarket shelves!

    Ps jam jar lids can be bought online – try the Jam Jar company who have a good range.

    • Leave a Reply

      Choclette
      28th October 2016

      Oh yes please do and let me know what you think – with a picture of course. I thought I’d already signed up, but if not I will do.

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