The last few months have been manic! What with allotment stuff, non-stop making, a rather marvellous holiday with wall to wall sunshine and an extra campervan to look after (my T5 daily driver no less)………. 😉
In truth, I really haven’t had a minute to blog that much about stuff – I just seem to be busy ALL the time!
But today I stopped to draw a breath (albeit after three hours spent at the sewing machine since early this morning) and tried to capture a little bit of summer before I blink and it’s gone…….
So I went up to Plot 29 – My little bit of heaven……….. Now officially the eighth best little bit of heaven in the whole of Leeds and the surrounding areas (I confess that I got a bit competitive over the last few months!). …… I mourned at the fact that the weather may have laid waste to a few things, shrugged my shoulders (See how I don’t get stressed?) and picked some big plump courgettes with a mind to preserving them for days that are drearier….
As a result, here’s a recipe for courgette relish (or, What I did with the rest of my day……):
YOU WILL NEED:
1kg of courgettes – washed, dried and then chopped into little bits;
2 medium sized onions – chopped into little bits;
1 shallot – chopped into little bits;
1 green pepper – chopped into little bits…… what can I say? I find chopping vegetables to be very therapeutic! The smaller; The better.
1 tbsp of salt – Place all your chopped vegetables into a bowl, sprinkle/mix in the salt, cover with a tea-towel and leave to ‘brine’ for at least an hour….. Rinse thoroughly with cold water and drain once this is done;
In a heavy based pan measure out:
250 ml of cider vinegar;
250ml of white wine vinegar;
350 g of granulated sugar;
1 finely chopped green chilli;
1 tsp turmeric;
2 tsp mustard powder;
2 tsp cornflour;
1 tsp dried coriander seeds;
1 tsp fresh coriander seeds (This is optional – If you can’t get fresh seeds just add an extra tsp of dried ones).
Then you just:
Place the pan on a medium heat and keep stirring until the sugar is dissolved.
Add the chopped vegetables and bring to the boil. Make sure you keep giving everything a good stir.
Once boiling, reduce the heat and simmer for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
If, after this time, it has reached the consistency of relish, spoon carefully into sterilised, warmed jars and seal; If it needs a little more time to reduce simply turn up the heat and boil vigorously for a few minutes more.
At this point I usually give the mixture a little stir with a sterilised skewer to remove any air pockets/bubbles.
Seal jars and allow to cool before labelling.
Ideally, this relish needs about six weeks to mature and allow the flavours to fully develop. Once opened it should keep for a further six weeks/two months. Keep refrigerated once opened.
Voila! A little taste of summer, captured in a jar!