Fruit, PreservesAlison Lambert

RHUBARB AND APPLE CHUTNEY WITH OATCAKES

Fruit, PreservesAlison Lambert
Rhubarb is back in season and apples are still plentiful, combine the two and you have a wonderful zingy accompaniment. This wonderful chutney will work well with cold cuts, aged cheddars and oily fish. It is also a great time to top up your depleted stock of preserves before the summer glut!


3 apples, cored and cut into chunks
800g rhubarb, trim off any leaves and cut into chunks
1 onion, diced
2cm piece of fresh ginger, finely grated
1 orange, zest and juice
300g raisins
400g brown sugar
300ml cider, white wine or malt vinegar
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
Pinch ground allspice
1 tsp salt
6 jars and lids, wash the jars and lids in hot soapy water and dry upside down in oven 50C

Method
In a large pot add the vinegar, sugar, spices and ginger. Heat gently until the sugar dissolves (5minutes).
Add the apple, rhubarb, onion and raisins along with the salt. Cook over a moderate heat until the ingredients soften and the mixture becomes aromatic, thick and pulpy. Taste! It should have a sweet/tart balance.
Spoon into warm, sterilised jars, seal and label.

OAT CAKES
125g medium oatmeal or rolled oats
2 tsp butter, melted
2 pinches of baking soda
Pinch of salt
1 Tbsp hot water (approx)
Additional oatmeal for kneading

Method

Mix the oatmeal, salt and baking soda together in a bowl, pour in the melted butter and stir well using a wooden spoon. Add enough water to form a stiff paste.
Cover a surface in oatmeal and turn the mixture onto this. Work quickly as the paste is difficult to work if it cools. Divide into two and roll one half into a ball and knead with hands covered in oatmeal to stop it sticking. Roll out to around 3 mm thick. Put a plate which is slightly smaller than the size of your pan over the rolled dough and cut round to leave a circular oatcake. Cut into quarters and place in a heated griddle or heavy-based frypan which has been lightly greased. Cook for about 3 minutes until the edges curl slightly, turn, and cook the other side. Prepare the remainder dough as you did before while the first is being cooked.
Store in an airtight container for 3-5 days.