Occasionally I come out of retirement and cater for friends. I just can’t say no to certain people. Really, I don’t feel like I’m in the groove of catering any more, even though I did it for so many years. But these favorite friends I refer to as my “fans,” because they absolutely love the food I cook. And there’s nothing like having appreciation for the laborious hours spent in the kitchen. After all, it’s why we cook.
So in a few days I’m cooking a sit-down dinner for 30 for a good friend, and I wanted to do something a little different for the pork entrée I’m serving (sous vide, of course!) Since it’s spring, I immediately thought of strawberries, and so strawberry chutney was an obvious decision. But there is not one strawberry chutney recipe in the universe, as far as I could tell. So I had to make one up!
And I’m glad I did. This recipe makes quite a bit of chutney, about 6-7 cups worth, but honestly, I’d make the whole recipe and can it. It’s that good. Just my opinion.
Strawberry Onion Chutney
1 cup raisins
1 cup port, I used tawny
1/3 cup olive oil
8 onions, cut in half, sliced thinly
8 cloves garlic, minced
1 – 2″ piece ginger, minced
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons ground cayenne pepper, optional
2 pounds strawberries, cut up into small pieces
Allspice, to taste
In a medium-sized bowl, soak the raisins in the port. I heated up the port just a little because my raisins were especially dry.
Heat the oil over medium heat in a large Dutch oven. Add the sliced onions and begin the sautéing process. It will take at least 30 minutes. A little browning is fine, but mostly I just wanted them nice and soft and cooked through.
Add the vinegar, brown sugar, salt, and cayenne, and cook for another 5 minutes.
If I might say so, this chutney is spectacular. I tested it out with pork, as well as with roasted chicken, pictured below.