This relish will use up your tomato glut and, possibly, tempt you to buy some cheese and biscuits to go with it.
Says Lia Leendertz, ‘I made this relish with some smoked garlic I picked up at my local greengrocer which gave a gentle smoky taste, but it works well with ordinary garlic, too.’
Makes 4 jars
6 smoked garlic cloves, sliced oil for frying
1 green chilli, seeds removed, finely chopped
800g chopped tomatoes, seeds removed
200ml red wine vinegar
50g capers, rinsed
1 In a large pan, heat a little oil and gently fry the onions until they start to soften. Add the garlic and chilli and slowly soften these too.
2 When the onion is turning translucent add the tomatoes, stir and cook gently for a few minutes. Then pour in the vinegar and the sugar.
3 On a low heat, stir to dissolve the sugar, then bring to a simmer. Simmer and stir for about 40 to 50 minutes, or until the mixture turns jammy. It is ready when you can draw a brief line across the bottom with a wooden spoon.
4 Allow to cool slightly, then stir in the capers and add plenty of salt and pepper, to taste. Pour into warmed jars and seal.
Sterilising for preserves
If you don’t sterilise your jars before you seal your preserves then they will quickly go off. I tend to go a bit belt and braces and use both sterilising tablets and a warm oven. This usually involves dissolving sterilising tablets in warm water and then bathing the jars in the water for around ten minutes, but check instructions on your particular product. I then rinse them off (you don’t have to, but they can leave a slight taste) and put them in a low oven for about half an hour. This has the added benefit that the jars come out completely dry and warm, so you can pour warm preserve into them and get a better seal. Seal while still warm, label when cold.