Adelaide Harris is my local food hero. She lives on a farm near Molong, NSW, and with her husband Tom, makes and/or grows most of what the family eats, from meat to cheese and even beer. Cool hey! Before moving to the country Adelaide worked as the Assistant Food Editor for Australian Gourmet Traveller magazine and so writes a mean recipe, see below...
Apple & capsicum relish
(Makes about 5 litres)
This is an adaptation of my Grandmother Jo’s recipe. It’s great on a cheese board to accompany a bitey mature cheddar, on cheese on toast or with roast mutton (or lamb) and especially good on cold mutton sambos (a school favourite).
1.5 kg Granny Smith & Royal Gala apples *
1.5 kg green & or red capsicums*
750 g brown onions (about 4)
2-4 (or to taste) chillies, thinly sliced
6 large garlic cloves
6 fresh bay leaves (or 8 dried)
2 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tsp whole cloves
1 tablespoon salt
750 ml (3 cups) cider vinegar
750 ml (3 cups) malt vinegar
750g each of brown & white sugar ***
- Finely chop apples, capsicum and onions in batches in a food processor (using the pulse button so as to ensure the apples & vegetables don’t become pulp). Place in a large saucepan. Add chillies, garlic, bay leaves, coriander seeds, cloves and salt. Pour over combined vinegars. Bring to the boil. Cook stirring occasionally until apple mixture is soft (about 30 minutes).
- Preheat oven to 100C. Combine sugars in a roasting pan. Warm in oven until just hot to the touch.
- Add to hot apple mixture and stir to combine. Return to boil and cook stirring occasionally for 1 hour.
- Meanwhile, place clean jars in the oven to warm.
- Ladle relish into jars. Relish will keep for up to 2 years or so in a cool dry place, the flavour improves on keeping.
* Using red capsicums & Royal Gala or other sweet apples makes for a sweeter relish I like to use of combination of green & red capsicums & Granny’s & Galas so as to have a balance of sweet and sour. Use what you have at hand.
** I use half cider and malt vinegar again to lessen the sweetness of the relish.
*** If you only have one of the sugars to hand – the brown sugar gives a richer caramel flavour and richer colour than white sugar