Green tomato and marrow chutney

Green Tomato and Marrow Chutney

I am sure that I normally make my chutney earlier than this, but this autumn has been so unseasonably mild that my tomatoes have just continued to give. A week or so ago I knew that it was finally time to pick the last of the tomatoes.

Last of the season's tomatoes

The tomatoes have done well this year, we have had a good harvest. I couldn’t say the same for our sweetcorn or our cabbage or our borlotti beans. But every year is different and that is part of the joy of vegetable growing. These beauties were destined for chutney, along with a marrow and some bramleys.

I made a very similar chutney last year and was very pleased with the result. This year’s seems promising. Of course, it is too early to tell what its real flavour might be once it has sat in the cupboard for a month or two and matured. At the moment it has too much vinegary  astringency to be sure. But underneath its immaturity I can sense its sweetness and the potential for a lovely chutney.

Chutney takes much longer to cook than you first imagine it might. Patience and a gentle simmer is needed and it is only ready when the vinegar has all but disappeared and in its place a thick sludge remains. It will take about three or four hours and your house will smell vinegary, spicy and fruity. I like it, the girls don’t. The Aga makes life easy because you just bring the pan to a simmer and then place it in the simmering oven for a few hours. A slow cooker might work, but I have never tried it so can’t say for sure.

Chutney cooking
The chutney nearly there and ready for potting

You can add whatever fruit and veg you have to this chutney as long as you remember that you need 1 part vinegar to three part fruit/veg. Then sugar in a similar amount, perhaps slightly less. You can use whichever spices are your favourite or you have in the cupboard, just make sure you tie them in a cloth that has been scalded in a pan of boiling water for a few minutes. That way you don’t experience an unpleasant bite into a whole spice when enjoying your chutney. I add walnuts to my chutney because I love the slight bite they retain, but feel free to not include them.

Here is what I have in mine this year.

1kg marrow
1.5kg tomatoes
400g bramley apple
350g onion
3 cloves garlic
150g sultanas
100g walnuts
15g salt
600ml vinegar (I used a mix of distilled and cider as that is what I had in the cupboard)
500g soft brown sugar
Spices to tie in a cloth bag:
1 chilli, left whole or cut in half depending how hot you want your chutney
1tsp mustard seed
4 cloves
5 cardamom seeds
1 tsp coriander seed
5 allspice berries
1 bayleaf
1 tsp cumin seed
1 tsp fresh ginger, sliced


Chop all the fruit and vegetables to an even size. Slice the garlic. Place all of this in a large preserving pan. Add the sultanas and the walnuts. Tie the spices into a bag and place in the pan. Sprinkle the salt over. Add the sugar and pour the vinegar over everything. Place the pan on a medium heat and bring to a gentle simmer. Continue to simmer until the fruit and vegetables are tender and the vinegar has become a thick sauce.

Pour into warm sterilised jars. Seal and store for a few months before enjoying and bringing back memories of your summer.

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9 thoughts on “Green tomato and marrow chutney”

  1. this chutney must have remarkable complexity, Kath–look at all those marvelous ingredients!
    you are right about the joy of the garden—you never know, season to season, what will really thrive and be plentiful and what will not. Always surprises from Mother Nature. my best to you and yours, Nancy

  2. Rosemary Richards

    Just what I was looking for! I have green tomatoes, courgettes, marrows and next door’s apples. (And lots of saved sauce/jam/pickle jars.) Thank you

  3. Carolyn Barrett

    I have big yellow courgettes, apples and onions all grown in my garden. I was looking for a recipe I could cook in my AGA, so I’m pleased to find this recipe. So thanks for the recipe!

  4. Debbie BLAKEMORE

    I am new to both chutney making and Aga cooking. I tried a zuchiini/capsicum chutney. It was a big fail – 30mins on Boiling plate 🙃. Which vinegar is best all rounder to use as there are just so many. I didn’t have enough malt vinegar (as per recipe ) and topped up with red wine vinegar.
    This post has been most helpful. Thank you

    1. You can use any vinegar that you might have in the cupboard. Malt vinegar will always make a chutney that darker colour than if you use a lighter vinegar like white wine or cider. I think malt is used most often as it is the cheapest and it makes sense when you are using so much it. I have had chutneys that have taken ages, I tend to pop them in the simmering oven (on the four oven Aga) and leave them to it for a couple of hours and then bring them back on to the simmering or boiling plate to finish off. I am glad this recipe has been of help. It is a really delicious chutney, but you can use anything that might be a glut in the garden or selling off cheap at the market.

      1. Yes. Good recipe and easy. Most times I have to stand and stir for a few hours. But makes sense to reduce slowly. The vinegar and sugar and spices will preserve everything.

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