Vegetarian recipes, preserves

In the summer, there's too much food coming from the garden, so we preserve a lot of it for the winter month, when we produce very little fresh food. We use a variety of methods for preserving: drying (mostly for herbs), fermenting (sauerkraut. of course, but we use the same basic principle of lacto-fermentation for other vegetables, such as french beans, carrots, beetroot, etc.), bottling and pasteurising juices or cooked vegetables, freezing (mostly for fresh fruit and vegetables, but also ice cream).
However, one of our favourite way of preserving food is making it into delicous jams and chutneys.

Apple Chutney

We have many apple trees in our gardens, so in the Autumn, we usually do a lot of this chutney, which last well into the new year!

  • 1.5 kg apples. The better the apples, the better the chutney!  I like to mix a few eating apples with the cooking apples, which gives a more interesting texture to the chutney, but if you want a smooth chutney, just use all eating apples.

  • 500g raw cane sugar

  • 50 g of grated ginger

  • 200 ml cider vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon chilli powder

  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds

  • 1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds

Peel the apples, core them, and chopped them into small bits.
Grind all the spices into a fine powder.
Put the apples and the ginger in a sauce pan with the cider vinegar and and cook gently at first, stirring occasionally. Once the apples have started to soften and sweat, add the sugar and the ground spices. Bring to the boil and simmer for 30 minute on low heat, then put into sterilised jars.

Onion Chutney

  • 1 kg onions, chopped small

  • 300g brown sugar

  • 50 g of grated ginger

  • 3 tablespoon cider vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon chilli powder

  • 15 black cardamom pods

Get the cardamom seeds out of the pods and grind them to a fine powder
Put the onions and the ginger in a sauce pan with the cider vinegar and and cook gently at first, stiring occasionnally. Once the onions have started to soften, add the sugar, the ground cardamom and the chilli powder. Simmer for 20 minute on low heat, then put into sterilised jars right away.

Lemon, ginger and chillies pickle

  • the skin of 10 lemons (you can use the juice for something else)

  • 200g brown sugar

  • 100 g of grated ginger

  • 100 ml cider vinegar

  • 100 g of fresh chillies
  • 1 teaspoon chilli powder

  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds

  • 1 tablespoon fenugreek seeds

Chop the lemon skins into really small pieces. Take the seeds out of the chillies and chop them into very small pieces. Grind the cumin and the fenugreed seeds. Put all the ingredients in a stainless steel sauce pan and bring to the boil. Simmer for 30 mn stirring often. The mix should be quite dry, but if it starts sticking to the bottom, add a little vinegar. Put in sterilised jars immediatly. 

Blackberry and apple jam

  • 1 Kg freshly picked blackberries

  • 3 small apples (windfall will do, even unripe)

  • 1.2 kg raw cane sugar

Wash the blackberries, peel and core the apples, then grate them. Put the fruit in a stainless steel sauce pan and heat up gently until the blackberreies start sweating their juice, then add the sugar and increase the heat. Bring to the boil, turn down the heat again, and simmer for 30mn. Put in sterilised jars immediatly. Will keep for a year at least.

Rhubarb and ginger jam

  • 1 Kg Rhubarb stalks

  • 100g fresh ginger

  • 1.2 kg raw cane sugar

Wash the rhubarb stalks, split them in 4 (or just in 2 if the are small) and chop them in half inch lengths. Grate the ginger. Mix the rhubarb, grated ginger and sugar in a stainless steel or earthenware bol and leave overnight. In the morning, put the mix in a large stainless steel sauce pan. Bring to the boil, then keep on a fast simmer for 90 minutes, stirring regularly. The mixture should have turned an unappetising dark brown and have thickened a lot by then (if not, keep cooking). Put in sterilised jars immediatly. Will keep for a year at least.

Rhubarb and elder flower jam

  • 2 Kg Rhubarb stalks

  • 20 fresh elderflowers

  •  2 kg raw cane sugar

Wash the rhubarb stalks, split them in 4 (or just in 2 if the are small) and chop them in half inch lengths. Harvest the elderflowers when they are just coming in bloom on a sunny morning. Do not wash them, just shake the insects off. Cut off as much of the stalks as possible.. Mix the rhubarb, flowers and sugar in a stainless steel or earthenware bol and leave for 24 hours. Draw as much of the juice out through a colander (keep it as cordial), and put the rest of the mix in a large stainless steel sauce pan. Bring to the boil, then keep on a fast simmer for 30 minutes, stirring regularly. The mixture should have turned an unappetising dark brown and have thickened a bit more by then (if not, keep cooking). Put in sterilised jars immediatly. Will keep for a year at least.

Carrot Kimchi

Inspired by the Korean recipe (although this is usually made with Chinese cabbage), this is our own rather hot way to preserve and enjoy carrots.
You need:
  • 1.5 Kg of carrots

  • 100 g of ginger

  • one fresh hot chilli or a tbs of chilli powder

  • 5 cloves of garlic

  • 2 tbs of salt

  • 1 l of water (not chlorinated, as this could impede fermentation)

  • 2 Kilner jars

Clean the carrot and chop them in small bits. I like to make little matchsticks, but you can try other shapes if you wish.
Make a brine with the water and the salt and soak the carrots in it overnight (with a plate on top to push the carrot bits down and make sure that they are soaking in the brine). Chop the ginger, garlic and chilli really small.
In the morning, drain the carrots, reserving the brine, and mix them with the spices. Pack in the Kilner jars and pour reserved brine into the jars until the carrots are completely covered with it. Close the jars and keep them in a warm place for a few days. The fermentation should start (the liquid will start bulbing). Move the jars to a cooler but frost free place and wait for at least 3 weeks to enjoy. The jars will keep for several weeks without refrigeration, but warm weather may speed up the fermentation. The same basic recipe can be used with a variety of vegetables.
At Macalla farm, we have so far successfully tried this recipe with French beans, cauliflower and Jerusalem artichokes (delicious, and far more digestible that way).

More recipes:

Soups    Salads and starters   Main courses    Breads    Ghee  Deserts   Bread   Herbal teas  Porridge

Back to the Clare Island retreat centre's site