It’s funny that while I’m in Ireland I enjoy doing many of the same things that I do back home in Maine. Foraging is one of them. This morning Sally and I were up visiting the donkeys and harvesting some of her apples and pears. We had a plan for making some homemade chutney. Chutney….good on toast, good on roasted turkey, good on sandwiches…..we are definitely falling short on our chutney consumption in the states. I’ll make up for a bit of that while I’m here, no problem. The blackberries are also plentiful at the moment. Our friend Frank came along on his way to feed his livestock, ” jump in” he said, ” I’ll take you up to the field to see a new mare we just bought”. When we arrived at the field, not only did we meet a very striking mare that appears to be Frank’s pride and joy, the outskirts of the field were laden with ripe berries. We picked as much as we could before heading back to the house. Right now the blackberries that grow wild here are in abundance. It’s hard to stop picking! I probably can’t bring them home in my suitcase, but you know I would if I could. What will we do with all these berries? A blackberry buckle maybe? Ginger blackberry scones? Hmm?
It’s these quiet rambling days that I love best when I’m here in Ireland. A few long walks, many cups of hot tea, and some cooking. Sounds like home, hey? ( without the pace and the work!) Here’s a dandy chutney recipe if you have the mind to make some. I know it’s been an exceptional apple harvest back in Maine. Plenty of time to make a nice chutney to go along with your Thanksgiving turkey. Enjoy! Oh, and here’s a picture of that fantastic mare and Frank…
Ginger Apple/ Pear Chutney
2-2 1/2 lbs. apples and pears ( or just apples) peeled, cored, chopped
3 medium red onions peeled and chopped
1 1/2 ounces fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1 3/4 cups of dark brown sugar
1 1/4 cups of apple cider vinegar
1 1/4 cups of raisins
Combine all the ingredients in a heavy bottomed sauce pan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally to avoid burning or sticking. Pour into sterilized jars and seal.