Spicy plum & apple chutney

Spicy plum & apple chutney

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(22 ratings)

Prep: 25 mins Cook: 1 hr, 10 mins

Moderately easy

Makes 4-5 jars
This multi-purpose chutney can add zing to sandwiches or makes a great dip for poppadums

Nutrition and extra info


  • kcal38
  • fat0g
  • saturates0g
  • carbs10g
  • sugars9g
  • fibre1g
  • protein0g
  • salt0.22g
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  • 1 garlic bulb



    Part of the lily, or alium, family, of which onions are also a member, garlic is one of the most…

  • thumb-size piece fresh root ginger



    Mainly grown in Jamaica, Africa, India, China and Australia, ginger is the root of the plant. It…

  • 2 large onion



    Onions are endlessly versatile and an essential ingredient in countless recipes. Native to Asia…

  • 1kg Bramley apples



    Grown in temperate regions, apples are one of the most widely cultivated tree fruits. There are…

  • 3 star anise

    Star anise

    star an-eese

    Star anise is one of the central spices in Chinese cooking. It has a strong anise flavour, with…

  • 1 tsp cumin seed
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 500ml bottle cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1kg plums



    The juiciest fruit in the stone fruit family, plums come in many different varieties, some sweet…

  • 450g golden caster sugar
  • you will need: 4-5 sterilised jars (see tip box at the bottom of page)

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  1. Start by getting the ingredients ready. Peel the garlic cloves and cut them into slivers. Peel and thinly shred the ginger. Halve, peel and thinly slice the onions, then put them in a large, wide saucepan or a preserving pan with the garlic and ginger. Peel, core and chop the apples, then add to the pan with the spices, vinegar and salt.

  2. Bring the pan to the boil over a gentle heat, give everything a good stir, then turn down the heat and cover the pan (if you don’t have a lid use foil). Simmer for 30 mins until the apples are cooked and pulpy.

  3. While the apples are simmering, stone and quarter the plums, then add them to the cooked apples with the sugar. Stir well and leave to bubble away, this time uncovered, for another 40 mins stirring regularly until the plums are cooked but still retain some of their shape. Ladle into the sterilised jars, seal and label. This chutney is best kept for about a month before eating as the vinegar needs a bit of time to mellow. If you don’t want the flavour of the spices to develop any more, then take out the cinnamon and star anise before potting. It will keep for 1 year in a cool place but once opened store in the fridge and use within a month.

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Comments (51)

dionne43's picture

For those who have commented on the length of time this chutney takes to thicken why not make it in your slow cooker! I have been making chutney in my slow cooker with the lid off and it turns out fine. It keeps the ingredients more solid as opposed to mushing them. It takes longer but and it needs far less watching and stirring. I have put the slow cooker on High and, generally speaking, unless it was at the beginning of cooking and I put it on Low I would not go out for hours at a time and leave it. However, I find it an absolute doddle!! Haven't tried this recipe yet but when I do I will come back and rate it.

jeanhughes116's picture

I find using a slow cooker for chutney making works every time.
I can cook it for as long as it needs without risk of burning.
My chutney is all bottled and waiting until Chrismas.

ritaryan's picture

Glad Ive taken the time to read the comments on this recipe and agree about the cooking time not being nearly long enough just wished id read them first.Are these recipes not tried out first? Am just hoping it will thicken up with time

ascot-girl's picture

Do you think you could use damsons instead of plums for this chutney?

I've got a glut of them!

ascot-girl's picture

Hi, could you use damsons for this chutney instead of plums?

I've got a glut of damsons and thought chutney would be a change instead of damson gin, damson cheese and damson jam!

ilovefoodtwo's picture

I always thought that these recipes were tested not only once but tested again and again, why are these people having so much problems with this recipe, I was going to try it but not now why spend money buying the ingredients then it does not work out, sorry but I would only try it if most of the readers gave it ***** 5 stars

frothycoffee's picture

This it the first time I have attempted chutney and after this I am sure it wont be the last. It is delicous. I had a bit left that I couldnt fit in a jar so we are eating it now. I am sure when it matures it will taste even better. It did take longer than the recipe stated but it was worth the wait

donnadrew's picture

Made it to the letter & it is delicious! Whether with cold meats, cheese, or curries it is superb!

kitchengenie's picture

Im not going to follow these exact guidelines for cooking after reading all your comments, but use the flavouring ideas which sound great. I think the problem with consistency is that you shouldnt cover the pan, it causes condensation and it thins the liquid taking it longer to cook down and thicken.
Ill try my version today and if it works, Ill post it up;)

lenapuss's picture

Oh yes - forgot to say that I used windfall eating apples and they stayed nicely in chunks. Because of the extra cooking the plums didn't hold together - but the flavour is all there.

And also it took far longer than 25 mins to prep - maybe I'm a bit slow, or it could be that I was watching Burghley Horse Trials on TV at the same time....or maybe it was just that the apples were small. Who knows - but it's going to be worth it.

lenapuss's picture

Absolutely lovely! I made this yesterday and it still needs to mature, but first indications are that it's going to be delicious. For those who rated it just after making it - please do give it a chance to mellow and for the flavours to meld and mature. I did simmer it for an extra 40 mins and added a finely chopped red chilli because I wanted a bit more zing than the ginger would give it. I'll come back in a month or so and rate it again when it's mature and ready to eat.

katewhite's picture

Cant believe the negative comments that I have just read, made it last year and its the best and most versitlie chutney I have ever made. I addeed it to currys, used as a dip with popodoms. Just looked for the recipe again to use some of the glut of plums we have got

globaholic's picture

I made this a couple of months ago and wasn't sure - but two months on and it now tastes fantastic! Chutnies do need a little maturing to improve them and this one is no exception. I will make this one again next year.

hubbahubster's picture

Hmm, kind OK – didn't come out anywhere near as chunky as the pic suggests, mine was more like a pink mush! It's tasty but a tad too vinegary. Not sure I'd make it again.

markettle's picture

I made this chutney a month ago, following the recipe to the letter, and after opening it yesterday I can honestly say it has turned out lovely. I was very worried as there are a lot of negative comments on here, so I was relieved when I opened it and tasted it.
I was concerned that the consistency was too runny when I was spooning it into jars. However, when I opened one yesterday the consistency was perfect and not at all runny.

jachan's picture

Tastes great....took a little longer than the recipe said...but well worth the wait. Will be making this one again soon

jaynepearson's picture

Ooops. Forgot to say. We have a plum glut and I've just tried this one. I did cook it for quite a bit longer (about 1 hr 40 mins in total), but it was worth it for the results. It is truly yummy and so say all of my neighbours! It's not possible to buy Bramley apples where we live (in Turkey), so I used grated eating apples. It worked absolutely fine, though the texture might be slightly different, as they don't pulp down in quite the same way.

jaynepearson's picture

I've found that quite a few chutneys often take longer to reduce than their recipes suggest. I've tried using a wider, flatter pan, which means the chutney reduces in less time. However, it's then in danger of burning on the bottom if you don't watch it like a hawk and I've finally concluded that a longer slower cook with an occasional stir is better in the end. After all, you only have to make it once for an entire winter's worth of yummy chutney, though usually the entire house does end up stinking of vinegar. Oh well, no pain, no gain.

scammie's picture

What a delicious chutney! Easy to make and gets better with time. Every person I've given some to has wolfed it down and begged for me to soon make some more. Lovely recipe.

djwinkles's picture

Now you could call this a rant .........I can't believe this was a tested recipe.


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