Apricot chutney

Photographer: Adam

Our good friend Dave the engineer helped out on this one not only providing delicious ripe central Otago apricots but also the recipe. I was in dire need of his help too as I tried to cheat with the first batch and used less than ripe apricots. What a mistake that was. The effect reminded me of when my great-grandma used to take out her false teeth to make us kids giggle, pure mouth sucking in sourness.


3 kg apricots, stoned and chopped
1 kg onions, finely chopped
4 large apples, chopped
6 tsp salt
1kg brown sugar
7 cups malt vinegar
3 Tbsp whole cloves
3 Tbsp whole allspice
3 Tbsp whole black peppercorns
1 tsp cayenne pepper


1. Combine all of the ingredients in a large pot and bring to a rolling boil, then reduce to a simmer for an hour and a half.
2. Strain through a sieve. Alternatively wrap spice in muslin before cooking and puree the sauce in a blender when the cooking is done. This will make a thicker sauce.
3. Bottle as desired and wait a while to serve, the flavours develop and acidity reduces over time.