Hot ‘Top Shelf’ Tomato Chutney/Sauce

11:30 am on 21 October 2013

Not quite chutney or sauce but something in between – this is arguably one of the best tomato condiments ever.

Orange zest and lime add zing without being identifiable, and warm spices balance out the flavours. It is hot, but not excessively so – reduce the chilli content only if you’re concerned. This chutney/sauce is a winner as it is.

(Makes 8 jars)

IngredientsTopshelf Tomato Chutney/Sauce

  • 2½ kg tinned tomatoes, diced, including juice (or equivalent fresh, peeled and diced)
  • 100g ginger, peeled & chopped finely (can use processed to save time)
  • 100g garlic, peeled & crushed (can use processed to save time)
  • 2 Tbsp (15g) chilli powder or to taste
  • Finely grated zest of 2 oranges
  • Juice of 5 limes, preferably (or 4 lemons)
  • 2 Tbsp salt
  • 3 cups malt vinegar
  • 1 kg sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 Tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1½ tsp ground cloves
  • 300g dates, chopped small


Place all the ingredients in a large, heavy bottomed saucepan and combine thoroughly.

Simmer uncovered, stirring regularly, until reduced almost by half and thickened to the consistency you want. This should take about 1 to 1.5 hours.

Transfer to hot, sterilised jars and screw on hot, sterilized metal lids.

Inspiration for this chutney came from Chutneys, Relishes and Sauces by Margaret O'Sullivan.

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