Chilli jam


4 red capsicums
6 tomatoes
100 ml olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
8 long red chillies, sliced in half lengthways,
Seeds removed and chopped
100 ml malt vinegar
300 g brown sugar
2 teaspoons salt


1. Place capsicums on a roasting tray lined with baking paper and bake at 250Âșc, turning every
5 minutes until the capsicums are blackened on all sides. remove from the oven and place in a bowl to cool before peeling.

2. Peel the tomatoes while the capsicums are roasting. Bring a saucepan of water to the boil. With a small kitchen knife or paring knife, remove the tomato stem area. score the opposite end of the tomato with a criss-cross pattern. cook the tomatoes in the boiling water for 20 seconds. remove, cool slightly and peel off the skins. slice the tomatoes in half (between the top and bottom) then, using a teaspoon, remove the seeds. chop roughly and set aside.

3. Peel the capsicums and discard any seeds and stem. chop into small pieces.

4. heat a heavy-based saucepan over medium heat and add the olive oil.

5. add the garlic and chilli and fry gently for 1 minute.

6. add the chopped capsicum and tomato and cook for 5 minutes.

7. add the vinegar, sugar and salt, cook on medium heat for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat slightly and cook until the jam has thickened.

8. pour into a sterilised jar (if storing), cool, cover and refrigerate. if using immediately and often, store in a jar or plastic container with a lid and keep refrigerated


* You will needcutting board, cook’s knife, paring knife or small kitchen knife, roasting tray, baking paper, heavy-based saucepan, weight, spoon and liquid measures and a wooden spoon

* Peeling the capsicum and tomato may seem like a lot of work, and it is a step that could be skipped; however, it is important as both capsicum and tomato skin do not break down when cooked and stay
stringy and chewy in the jam if not removed.

* To skip roasting, peeling and de-seeding the capsicum, simply buy 300 g roasted capsicum from a good delicatessen and roughly chopbefore adding to the recipe.

* 6 large whole tomatoes will yield about 600 g peeled and de-seeded tomato.

* It may seem strange that there is lots of capsicum and tomato in a dish called chilli jam. Fortunately, capsicum, tomato and chilli are all from the ‘nightshade’ family of plants with the first 2 ingredients adding body to the jam. Chilli on its own, as a jam, would be too strong and would require too much mucking around
to get enough even for a small jar.

* The chilli heat in this recipe is very mild, therefore if you require some real chilli kick in your jam, add 48 bird’s eye chillies to the recipe, preparing them the same way as the long red chillies but being extra careful in handling the smaller hot chillies. After handling small hot chillies and even after washing your hands, there will be chilli residue on your hands for an hour or moreso be careful. Try washing your hands with straight lemon juiceit will help.


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