Apple Chutney is a delicious relish made with apples, spices, vinegar & a sweetener. Chutney is an Indian condiment usually made with veggies, coconut, nuts, fruits, spices & herbs. Every region in India has a different way of making chutney & pickles. There are numerous kinds of chutneys made across India. Most of these are spicy, hot, tangy & sometimes sweet tasting like this Sweet Tamarind Chutney , Sweet tomato chutney and mango chutney.
This apple chutney is similar to the tamarind chutney & has exceptionally great flavors. It is delicious & tastes sweet, tangy & slightly hot with bursting flavors of spices. Apple chutney goes well with breads, Parathas, Roti, Snacks, Appetizers & even with grilled meat dishes.
Fruit chutney is Indian inspired & originated during the British rule / British Raj, as a way to preserve the surplus produce. Overtime fruit chutney became very popular & made way to the store shelves. It is made with various fruits like apples, mangoes, cranberries, peaches & pretty much with every other fruit in season.
This apple chutney can be served instantly or can be preserved for several months. Just like a pickle, this chutney develops intense flavors as it ages. Here are some details on the ingredients used.
This recipe uses spices like star anise, cloves, cinnamon, fennel seeds and cumin for the flavor. This combination of spices is what makes this chutney extremely flavorful.
I have used the first 3 in the whole form and not ground as they help the chutney to develop flavors overtime. If using them in the ground form, be cautious as the ground spices are stronger in flavor.
Star anise is a spice mostly used in biryani, stews, soups & braising broths. It has a sweet, peppery & licorice-like flavors. I have used 2 individual segments/ petals of a flower. A close substitute to this is aniseed or five spice powder.
Fennel seeds & cumin are roasted on a low flame and then ground. You may use them whole if you are going to preserve the chutney for longer. But I have found both these spices are best when used ground .
Vinegar: Apple cider vinegar gives the best results here especially if you intend to serve it immediately. You can substitute it with malt vinegar but the apple chutney will have a stronger vinegary flavor which vanishes overtime if preserved for a few months.
Sweetener: I have used a mix of brown and white sugar. You can substitute one for the other. There will be a change in the color with the substitutes. You can substitute the sugar with dates or /and raisins.
Since I always have a bottle of dates tamarind chutney in stock, I make the apple chutney without dates.
How to make Apple Chutney (Stepwise photos)
1. Pour ghee or oil to a wide pan or pot. When the oil turns hot, add cinnamon, cloves and star anise. Let them sizzle then add ginger. Fry it for about a minute. Then add red chili powder or flakes.
2. Give a quick stir.
3. Then add chopped apples and pour the vinegar.
4. Then add brown and white sugar along with cumin powder, fennel powder & ground pepper. Mix all of them together.
5. Cover and let it simmer until the apples turn tender. Covering the pot at this stage helps to retain the flavors of spices.
6. Sugar dissolves and the entire mixture will have a lot of moisture. Open the lid when the apples are tender and you begin to smell the mixture good. Continue to cover in the open pot stirring until all of the excess moisture evaporates and the apple chutney turns thick.
7. At this stage, mash a small portion of the chutney with a spatula to give a texture to the chutney. Next turn off the stove and cool this completely.
Lastly store apple chutney in a clear and dry glass jar. It keeps good for several months if you keep it in a dry shelf, away from moisture.
How to store apple chutney
This chutney keeps good for several months when stored in a clean, dry & air tight glass jar. Place the bottle in a dry cabinet. Avoid keeping it in the kitchen if it is very humid. If making in large quantity then store them in smaller jars. Use moist free spoons to serve it.
Ingredients (US cup = 240ml )
- 500 grams apples (½ kg, 1 Lb, 3 medium)
- 1 tablespoon oil (or ghee) (refer notes)
- 1 gram cinnamon (2 inches) (True/Ceylon cinnamon)
- 2 parts star anise (2 segments/petals)
- 4 cloves
- 1½ tablespoon ginger minced
- ¼ teaspoon red chili powder (or chili flakes, adjust to taste)
- 1 teaspoon ground fennel (saunf powder)
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin (roasted jeera powder)
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar or jaggery (substitute with dates or raisins)
- 3 tablespoons sugar or jaggery (substitute with dates or raisins)
- ¼ teaspoon ground pepper (black pepper powder)
- ½ cup apple cider vinegar
- Rinse the apples well under running water and peel them. Chop them finely. You can also use a chopper.
How to make apple chutney
- Pour oil or ghee to a hot pan or pot. Add the spices – cloves, star anise & cinnamon.
- When they begin to sizzle add the ginger & let it fry for a minute. Then lower the flame and quickly stir the red chilli.
- Add apples, sugar, cumin powder, fennel powder, pepper and vinegar.
- Stir and cook covered on a low heat until the apples turn tender.
- Then open the lid and cook further until almost all the liquid evaporates.
- Mash a small portion of this mixture with the spatula to give a thicker texture to the apple chutney.
- Turn off the stove when most of the excess moisture evaporates. (refer video or pics below)
- Cool the apple chutney completely and store it in a clean dry glass jar. It keeps good for several months if you keep it in a dry shelf.
- Oil or ghee is used here to bring out the flavors in spices. You may skip it if you do not prefer.
- This chutney is spicy but low on heat. If you prefer more heat, then add more ground pepper. Too much chili may alter the flavors.
- You can reduce the sugar in the recipe if you do not prefer it to be sweeter.
- You can simply replace the sugar with fine chopped dates & sweet raisins. But the flavor & texture will be different. But still tastes very good but I am not sure of the shelf life.
- If you are new to spices, you can find the details in the intro of this post.
Alternative quantities provided in the recipe card are for 1x only, original recipe.
For best results follow my detailed step-by-step photo instructions and tips above the recipe card.
NUTRITION INFO (estimation only)
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