Tag Archives: Mango Chutney

CarolCooks2 in my Kitchen…Chicken Jalfrazi…

We love an Indian Curry …This week we thought as we had some bell peppers to use we would make our version of a Jalfrezi. It is said that Chicken Jalfrazi was invented during the British Raj it is now on every Indian restaurant s menu…so what does Jalfrazi mean?… Jalfrezi’ means a type of Indian technique through which a hot & spicy curry is made with fried meat and vegetables. In Bengali, ‘Jal or jhal’ means spicy and ‘frezi’ means stir-fried…

Chicken Jalfrezi.

Jalfrezi is a spicy curry. It certainly isn’t mild. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the hottest, Jalfrezi certainly sits somewhere in the range of a 7-10. It is hot because the recipe includes both chilli powder and chopped fresh green chilli.


500 gm of chicken with the skin removed and cut into cubes.

For marinade:

  • 2-inch piece of fresh ginger peeled and either grated or as I do I blitz it together with the garlic.
  • 4-6 pieces of garlic peeled and grated.
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 -2 tsp of garam masala powder
  • Salt to taste.

For the vegetable mix:

  • 200 gm of onions peeled and thickly sliced or chopped
  • 1-3 green chillies sliced
  • 250 gm fresh tomatoes quartered
  • 2 tbsp ghee/oil
  • Salt to taste.

For cooking curry gravy:

  • 2 tbsp Ghee/oil
  • 1/2-2 tsp chilli powder
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste

Mix the ginger, garlic turmeric, garam masala powder and salt together. Coat the chicken and marinate for 2-3 hours.

To cook the jalfrezi heat your ghee in a wok then add your sliced onions, chillies, peppers and salt and stir fry for 5 minutes.

Add your tomato wedges and cook until the onions are translucent and the tomatoes half-cooked about 10 minutes. Lift out with a slotted spoon and set to one side.

Add 2 tbsp of ghee and heat then add your chicken pieces..sometimes I use legs or thighs. Cook on high heat for 5 mins, stirring.

Add the chilli powder and the tomato puree. lower the heat and simmer until the chicken is cooked. If it is too dry add some water we prefer a thinner sauce rather than thick and dry. Add the vegetables and cook for 5-10 mins.


Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary…We like this curry as we prefer a tomato-based curry like the Jalfrazi …

Garnish with chopped coriander and serve with rice, mango chutney and flatbread or nan bread.


CarolCooks2…Friday Food Review…Cardamon…

Welcome to Friday Food Reviews where I will be covering a different food or product each week and looking at… what are they?  where do they grow, what can we substitute them for in a recipe, are they safe to eat, how to store them, how to use them, cook them, anything connected to that food. or product..all the why’s and the wherefores…it will, of course, be mainly my own opinion or a known fact…good or bad…there may even be a tried and tested recipe…or three…

This week it’s…Cardamon…

I use cardamon frequently and it’s apt that Cardamon is nicknamed the “queen of spices,” it livens up baked goods, adds a touch of warmth to cup after cup of milky, sweet tea …few spices or flavours match the aromatic complexity of cardamom…one of my favourite spices.

Cardamom is a spice in the ginger family recognisable by its trigonal pod husks containing small black seeds. While native to subtropical Asia and a prominent ingredient in Indian cuisine, modern-day cardamom is also produced in Guatemala, Malaysia, and Tanzania. It is sold in whole pods, shelled whole seeds, or in powdered form.

Cardamon is one of the more expensive spices by weight although Saffron and Vanilla rank higher in the expensive spice range…

There are two main types of cardamon the “black” and the “green”…

Black Cardamom…

Black cardamom, the seed pods,  dark brown to black in colour take on their smokey flavour due to the way they are dried over an open fire. Growing in pods on a herbaceous plant belonging to the Zingiberaceae (ginger) family.

The pods have tough, dried, wrinkly skin, that is roughly one inch in length, and have small, sticky, dark-coloured seeds inside. Black cardamom has a pungent aroma with a citrus and eucalyptus flavour.

Black cardamom pods are nearly always used whole and fried in a little oil to release the flavours…if a recipe calls for powder then remove the seeds and grind but use them immediately or they lose their flavour… my mango chutney recipe calls for whole cardamom pods plus some deseeded…which I am making today as I have run out of mango chutney…

Black cardamom pods should be available at Indian food markets, gourmet markets, and very well-stocked grocery stores, while the ground version is often in the supermarket spice aisle. Always try to buy black cardamom whole rather than in seed form as this spice begins to lose its potency and aroma once the skin is removed… For the same reason, it is also better not to buy the powdered form if whole pods are available… pods are also less expensive than ground cardamom. Look for fragrant, well-formed pods that are plump, firm, dry, and about an inch in length.

Stored correctly in a well-sealed container away from light and heat the pods should remain fresh for about a year… ground cardamon, however, loses its flavour very quickly and only lasts 2-3 months max which is why I buy pods and grind the seeds if a recipe calls for powdered cardamom.

Green Cardamom…

The green pods, Elettaria cardamomum, also known as “true cardamom,” have the characteristics most recognized as cardamom flavour: a herbal warmth like a fragrant cross between eucalyptus, mint, and pepper—more citrusy than fennel and sweeter than cumin.

It wasn’t until I was looking for green cardamom that I realised why it was harder to find and more expensive than its black cardamom sister…

Green cardamom goes well with savoury dishes but is also the spice of choice for many sweet desserts like rice puddings, pannacotta and ice creams…

The cracked pods are also lovely added to sugar to make a wonderful cardamon flavoured sugar…

Thank you for joining me today …do you use a lot of cardamom in your cooking?

See you tomorrow for Saturday Snippets x





The Culinary Alphabet…A-Z…The Middle Letter T…

Welcome to series 3 of the Culinary Alphabet A-Z…Where the middle letter is T…

So what’s in store? In this series the A, B, C, etc will be the middle letter, for example, Jarlsberg, Korma, Apple and Tursu a variety of Turkish pickled vegetables… how easy that will be who knows I am sure some of the letters of the alphabet could cause the grey matter to rebel or implode…haha…I also don’t want to use plurals to form a word as I may need that word for another letter and it’s sort of cheating I think…unless of course I really get stuck…which I am sure will happen…The Letter T is quite easy I have left some for Pete and Chel…Have fun guys Looking forward to what you come up with …

Today it is words where the middle letter is T.

Let’s go and see what I have found…

Autun Cheese…

I do love cheese and always love to try different cheeses although English Cheddar nicely matured is my all-time favourite…Christmas is when the cheeseboard comes out fully laden…Delicious…

This French cheese is a tall cylinder or cone of soft fresh cheese made with cow’s milk in summer, and a mixture of cow and goat’s milk in autumn … it’s recognisable by its greyish-blue mould rind…It is a fresh cheese or it may be matured for up to 2 weeks and has a rich, round flavour.


Batter, comes in many forms it can be as thin and crispy as air or a little thicker like on good old British Fish and Chips which is often a beer batter…basically batter is a mixture of flour and liquid like water, milk or soda water/beer with other ingredients, such as leavening agents, shortening, sugar, salt, eggs, and various flavourings, used to make baked goods and other food products like coating fish, meat or vegetables…one of my favourites is the tempura batter that is comprised of cold water, flour, and a beaten egg. …less oil is also used to fry which means it is lovely and crispy and a little healthier…


Borscht is a sour soup common in Eastern Europe and Northern Asia…generally associated with beets and recognised by the classic beet red colour the Bortch that I first tried was made by my Russian neighbour with pork and very nice it was with horseradish and of course with the addition of lots of Russian vodkas to wash it down…Hic!

Batch Cooking…

I have batch cooked for years…it is a lifesaver and a big plus particularly if you lead a busy life as you will always have a ready meal and all you have to do is thaw and heat it up…

It is also a boon if you are cooking for one as you can make a regular portion for 4 people and then freeze three again

Betel Leaf…

Betel leaf is a great source of antioxidant that fights oxidative stress by scavenging free radicals. Betel leaf juice provides relief from internal pains in the body. Betel leaves are a powerhouse of antioxidants that clear radicals from the body. It restores normal PH levels in the body and helps an upset stomach. Ayurveda medicine widely recommends eating betel leaves for relief from constipation.


Bitters are to cocktails like salt is to seasoning your food…Bitters are made from botanicals, like aromatic herbs, bark, roots, and fruit. These ingredients are infused into a flavourless alcohol base to create a potent flavouring…


Ahhhhh no Indian curry is complete without mango chutney which reminds me I need to make some more Mango Chutney...there must be hundreds of different chutneys around the world…chutney can be dry, wet, freshly made or preserved like my mango chutney they enhance a dish and compliment the flavours…

Cottage  Cheese…

Cottage cheese is a mild flavoured fresh cheese curd to which other ingredients can be added like chives, pineapple, prawns…it is lovely with some fresh mixed fruits for a light lunch…a topping for a jacket potato…

Cottage cheese has long been a favourite among athletes and people trying to watch their weight. Mild and fresh, it’s made from curdled milk. After draining, the curds are washed to remove residual acids, giving cottage cheese a sweeter taste.


Apple pie and custard…the thing that dreams are made of…just saying…but what is custard it is a sauce made with milk, sugar and egg yolks to thicken it…although custard is mainly used as a dessert, or as a base for a dessert, or as a dessert sauce. Custard can also be savoury. Quiche is an example of a savoury custard baked in a pie crust. And believe it or not, a frittata is a savoury custard that’s cooked directly in a deep skillet. For the recipe for the pictured frittata please click here

My favourite baked custard is a creme brulee…if I am eating out that is my favourite go-to dessert…I also love a custard tart with a sprinkling of nutmeg…wonderful…I’m hungry now …lol


Eaten as a snack they are energy-rich and satisfying…I always have a pack of dates handy…the fruit of the date palm tree, which is grown in many tropical regions of the world. Dates have become quite popular in recent years.

They are an excellent natural sweetener …a source of fructose, which is a natural type of sugar found in fruit.

For this reason, dates are very sweet and also have a subtle caramel-like taste. They make a great healthy substitute for white sugar in recipes due to the nutrients, fibre and antioxidants that they provide…The best way to substitute dates for white sugar is to make date paste, which is made by mixing dates with water in a blender. A rule of thumb is to replace sugar with date paste at a 1:1 ratio.

For example, if the recipe calls for 1 cup of sugar, you’ll replace it with 1 cup of date paste.

Date paste is also lovely on some homemade brown bread…

Date Paste:

Approx 2 cups of pitted Medjool dates about 24 dates.
3/4 to1 and 1/4 cups almond/cashew milk or water if using the paste for a recipe.
A pinch of sea salt.
1 tsp of vanilla extract.
Before blending the dates soak them in hot water for about 30 minutes you can then start
blending add the drained dates to the blender and add 3/4 of your chosen milk and blend add
the remainder of the milk until you ger the required consistency.
You may need to shake or scrape the blender down as you go to achieve a smooth paste…
How easy is that?…

It is important to note that although dates are high in fibre and nutrients, they are still fairly high in calories and best consumed in moderation.

Geitost…or Gjetost .

Is a Norweigan brown cheese…This unique Norwegian brown cheese is also known as Brunost, which is simply Norwegian for Brown Cheese…It is also said to be popular in South Korea…

Gjetost is often sliced and served on toast for breakfast. Gjetost is also great for breakfast because it’s a cheese that pairs well with coffee. It travels well and is a good cheese to keep in your pocket while skiing or taking on road trips and camping trips.

Brown cheeses are made with concentrated whey and get their colour from the caramelization of the sugars in the milk during the cheese-making process.


A latke is a type of potato pancake or fritters in Jewish cuisine that is traditionally prepared to celebrate Hanukkah. Latkes can be made with ingredients other than potatoes including cheese and zucchini or even coconut which I first saw over at KoolKosherKitchen made by Dolly who is definitely more of an expert on these delicious morsels than I am so please head over and have a read…


Latte is a coffee drink of Italian origin…loved and drank around the world…served hot or as an iced latte which is most delicious on a hot day.


Lettuce comes in a range of varieties – with flavours from buttery and mild to nutty and even slightly bitter; textures from delicate to crunchy; and colours from pale to dark green and burgundy.

With all these choices, even the most ardent veggie-phobes or demanding foodies will find some lettuce to love…What is your favourite lettuce?

Lotus Root…

Very popular in Asian cuisine this root is found sunk into the mud of a pond or river bottom, lotus root is actually the stem of the plant. Growing as long as four feet, the stems rises out of the water and ends in the elegant red flowers that are so revered in Buddhist and Hindu cultures…

Whether it’s stir-fried, boiled, braised, steamed, or deep-fried, lotus root remains crisp yet tender, with a creamy and starchy texture that’s similar to taro root. Lotus seeds can be boiled and added to dessert soups or ground to make lotus seed paste, a common ingredient in sweets like mooncakes and daifuku. Though not as widely available, even the petals and leaves of the lotus plant are edible.

Martini Espresso…

Martini Espresso is not a true Martini as it contains neither gin or vermouth…A true Martini can be shaken or stirred in true James Bond-style or served as a dirty martini …”Dirty” simply refers to the addition of olive juice or brine. It’s a classic cocktail that is very easy to mix up and one of the most popular variations on the original gin martini. You can make this drink as dirty as you like by pouring the olive juice to suit your taste…


Mustard is one of my favourite condiments particularly English Mustard… made from the seeds of a mustard plant. The whole, ground, cracked, or bruised mustard seeds are mixed with water, vinegar, lemon juice, wine, or other liquids, salt, and often other flavourings and spices, to create a paste or sauce ranging in colour from bright yellow to dark brown.

Pigs Trotter…

Pigs trotters were one of my fathers favourite winter casseroles…A pig’s trotter, also known as a pettitoe, or sometimes known as a pig’s foot, is the culinary term for the foot of a pig. The cuts are used in various dishes around the world and it seems they have experienced a resurgence in the late 2000s…

Pickled pigs feet is a type of pork associated with the cuisines of the Southern United States, Mexican, Chinese, Italian, and Scandinavian cuisine. The feet of domestic pigs are typically salted and smoked in the same manner as other pork cuts, such as hams and bacon.

Pitta Bread…

Pita or pitta is a family of yeast-leavened round flatbreads baked from wheat flour, common in the Mediterranean, Middle East, and neighbouring areas…but what make pitta bread different to other flatbreads like Naan bread?

Pitta bread usually has yeast, sugar, flour, salt, and olive oil, while Naan bread has many of those ingredients plus eggs, butter, and yoghurt. It is the difference in ingredients that gives them both their unique taste and texture.


A pretzel is a type of baked pastry made from dough that is commonly shaped into a knot…According to historians, the pretzel is the oldest snack food known dating around 610 A.D. in the region between the south of France and northern Italy.

Legend also traces the pretzel to medieval Europe, where Italian monks reportedly created treats to reward schoolchildren by baking dough with arms shaped in prayer. The tradition spread through Europe, and pretzels became associated with good luck and eternal love.

Sultana Grape…

Sultanas are made from seedless green grapes…Raisins and sultanas are quite similar…Raisins are however made from a range of grape varieties. They are dried naturally and are usually slightly darker and larger than the sultana…

Tater Tots…

Tater tots are grated potatoes, seasoned and formed into small cylinders and deep-fried, often served as a side dish…they are also a registered trademark and I did wonder whether or not to include them but they are delicious small bites especially when homemade.


A flat or bowl-shaped fried corn tortilla topped with refried beans, or guacamole and topped with vegetables and other ingredients.


This fish inhabits the eastern Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea, as well as the North Sea on the East Coast of Britain. In the United States, it is commonly known as the English whiting. Whiting is a white-fleshed sea fish, they are a small member of the cod family and have a very similar flavour. As whiting are less well known they are a more economical alternative to buy than cod and are more sustainable.

As a side note, I love eating fish and would be happy to eat fish every day…However, because of some dubious fishing practices and sustainability plus some fish is very high in mercury I know I have to be aware and check before I buy fish and from where…This link is quite informative

Thank you for joining me today… T was quite easy… I have saved quite a few for Pete Springer who always contributes…Thank you, Pete… and Chel it seems is back on the blogging scene after having another sweet baby boy so maybe she will have some thoughts between sleeping and the feeding of little bubba …no pressure of course x

Chel did however provide me with a few great ideas for when this series has finished…Thank you, Chel much appreciated xx…I was hoping to make this post a lot more festive but it didn’t lend itself to much that was festive…

Until tomorrow..stay safe and laugh a lot…Thank you for joining me I look forward to your comments as always xx


Tropical Friday…The Mango!

Mangoes known as Mo Muang in the Thai language are in season again and are eaten here both green or ripe.

They are one of my favourite fruits and my new addition to my garden is the purple mango which I am willing it to grow and fruit I am so looking forward to sampling this beautiful fruit…

Whether the mango is eaten green or ripe, they are sliced and a dip made from sugar, salt, and chilli used to dip your slices of fruit in…


There are many stalls here selling ready prepared fruit in bags and it is always accompanied by this little bag of chilli mix…It comes as standard here…haha…it is also Lily’s favourite dip the more chilli in it the better for her…

Sticky rice with Mango is probably one of the most iconic Thai desserts and on most restaurant menus from the little cafe to the poshest restaurant.


To make this at home is very easy… First, steam some glutinous rice.

To prepare the milk:

 Heat 1 cup of coconut milk in a pot over medium heat. Stir constantly and let the coconut milk simmer. DO NOT let it boil hard as coconut milk will curdle. Also, make sure that the coconut milk you buy is 100% pure as I have been informed by my son that where he lives in the UK all coconut milk sold is not 100% and that definitely separates on heating to high.

Then add  2 tbsp of sugar and 2 pinches of salt. Remove from heat. Pour 3/4 of the hot coconut milk over  1 cup of the hot sticky rice. Let it sit for 5 minutes. The hot sticky rice will absorb all the coconut milk. The rice should be a little mushy.

 Spoon the rest of the coconut milk on top of the rice at the serving time.


Smoothies here are made from just mango or the mango is mixed with other fruits all very nice and fresh… I have also been experimenting with making my own protein drinks…


Doesn’t that fruit look lovely and fresh?? I am watching it ripen from my bedroom window to pick the fruit methinks might be a problem unless I can get someone to shin up the tree although we do have a hook on a long pole to retrieve the fruit of our palm tree I just don’t want it to land on the floor with a bang and get bruised…

Mango is such a versatile fruit I make my own mango chutney it is lovely in a mango salsa or as a mango and mustard dip. What do you make from your mangoes???

Mango and Mustard Dip is lovely with chicken or fish Goujons or a nice piece of grilled white fish.


  • 1/2 cup of fresh mango puree
  • 1/4 cup of mayo
  • 3 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 1-2 tsp Chilli flakes
  • 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • Salt to taste

Just put everything in your blender or a bowl and whisk it together and there you have it … with the chilli, I would add 1 tsp and taste before you add the second.

Mango used as a sauce or in a savoury dish is also lovely and this is my Mango Chicken which I featured on the Recipe Hunter a while ago it is a firm favourite in this house.


Lastly, if you are not sure how to prepare a mango…Easy when you know how x


I hope you have enjoyed this culinary journey with the marvellous Mango …

I hope you all have a lovely weekend wherever you are… I am now off to make choc chip cookies with Lily xxx

Thank you for reading have a lovely day xxx





CarolCooks2…Week 6…in my Kitchen…made from scratch…Indian Curry and Mango Chutney…

Hello and welcome to my kitchen which at the moment is very hot…our high season has nearly arrived come next month it will be even hotter…but we still love our curries both Thai and Indian…

Last week I shared with you my two favourite curry mixes…Just in case you missed it here is the link…

This week I will take you through the process of how we make our curries…as I said before I do not profess to be an expert but I try to use as many authentic ingredients as I can…

We either use chicken or pork for our curries if using chicken I normally use either thighs or the chicken leg and cut it in two which gives us the thigh and the chicken drumstick. Sometimes I use chicken breasts but we find meat on the bone is far tastier…

When using pork we prefer to use pork hip but sometimes use shoulder if it is not too fatty.

Ingredients: Serves 3/4 depending on appetite…

  • 500gm Chicken or pork
  • 2 tbsp Ghee but oil is fine.
  • 1 large Onion roughly chopped
  • 2 Large tomatoes pureed.
  • 1-2 sprigs Curry Leaves.
  • 1 Bay Leaf( Optional)


  • 1/4/1/2 tsp Turmeric.
  • 2 tbsp  Natural Yoghurt.
  • 1 tbsp  of my spice mix

Marinade the chicken.

Add ghee to the pan and cook onions until golden to this I add minced garlic(3/4) cloves and fresh ginger( thumb size), this adds more flavour.

SAM_7725Add  3 tbsp of 2/3 tbsp of my spice mix and stir.

Add chicken, curry leaves and tomatoes.

SAM_7726Add little water, bring to a slow boil and reduce heat to simmer until chicken/ pork is cooked.

imagesXL6V2C5LServe with steamed rice, Mango Chutney and or nan bread.

This is a lovely curry well-flavoured and as spicy as you like…Your choice.

Cooks Note…Most of the time now I omit the yoghurt and increase the tomatoes as we prefer a more tomato-based curry…when I do this I add the meat to the onion and garlic/ginger mix rather than marinate the meat the turmeric then goes in with the spice mix…

Any questions I am happy to help .. 

Serve with Nan bread and/or mango chutney and steamed rice.

Mango Chutney… Mangoes of all varieties are so plentiful here it would really be remiss of me to not make my own and it tastes so much better than some of the sweet sugary varieties which are in the supermarkets…


  • 4 under-ripe Mangoes.
  • 3cm Fresh ginger finely diced.
  • 3 cloves garlic finely diced.
  • 500 gm sugar.
  • 1tsp salt.
  • 1/2-1 tsp dried chilli.
  • 1tsp cumin seeds.
  • 2 cardamom plus 4 cardamom seeds.
  • 7cm cinnamon stick.
  • 5 whole cloves.
  • 250 ml vinegar I use Apple cider but have used white vinegar and malt vinegar.
  • 5 black peppercorns crushed.

Let’s Cook!

Peel mangoes and cut into small strips.

Place mangoes in a large pot Crush diced ginger and garlic in pestle and mortar and stir into mangoes.

Stir in sugar,salt,chilli,cumin,cardamom,cinnamon and cloves.Stir to blend. Cover and leave overnight at room temp. N.B. We are prone to ants here so put water into a shallow tray and put the bowl in the centre and cover  the ants won’t swim the moat..haha

Mango cooking in pan

Mango chutney

Next day place mangoes in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Cook stirring occasionally until the mix starts to thicken about 30-45 mins. Stir in vinegar and crushed peppercorns and cook for a further 3 minutes.

Put into warm sterilised jars. Once cooled I keep it in the fridge where if you live in cooler climes a cool larder will be fine. This makes 3 medium-sized jars.

That’s all for today...another easy to make at home dinner which also freezes well an Indian Curry…it saves you money and cuts the chemicals and fillers.

Thank you for reading this post I hope you enjoy this new series…if you cook from scratch and have some tips to share please leave a comment I would love to hear from you…Love Carol x




Mistletoe and Wine…Christmas Chutneys 2020…


In the run-up to Christmas, you will find everything on my blog over the next few weeks that you need to make… today it’s chutney recipes or relish as it is often named...We love chutneys in this house and like pickles, they add a touch of zing to the plate I also make chutney out of many fruits and vegetables…Fruit or vegetables it gets made into a chutney.

But what is Chutney?…it is a gluten-free, spicy or savoury condiment which originated in India. Made from fruit or vegetables and/or herbs and spices cooked with sugar and vinegar.

It compliments many dishes and provides balance or it can highlight a specific flavour in other words chutney is anything preserved in sugar and vinegar regardless of it texture, ingredients or consistency.

It is an integral part of Indian Cuisine and can be served with Basmati Rice, with curries or with bread like naan or Dosa.

Elsewhere in the world like Britain where I come from it compliments roasted meats i.e Onion Chutney or a fruity chutney pairs well with creamy cheeses like Brie or goats cheese…with a hard English Cheddar it compliments a Ploughman’s platter…

A Ploughman’s lunch, British cold meal, typically served in pubs, consisting of bread, cheese, and assorted accompaniments. It supposedly resembles what a ploughman might have eaten on a midday break in the fields.

Star Fruit Chutney/Relish:

Star Fruit or Carambola as it is also known as is a lovely vibrant yellow and due to its distinctive ridges when it’s cut it resembles a star hence its name.

The entire fruit is edible it has firm, crunchy flesh and is quite juicy. The taste is likened to that of a grape. There are two main types of star fruit the smaller fruit is sour(tart) and the larger fruit like I have in my garden is sweeter. But although sweet they very rarely have more than a 4% sugar content.

Here in Thailand they are cooked with shrimp or chicken or eaten raw dipped into the sugar/chilli mix which is commonly eaten with fruit here or just eaten with rock salt. It can be made into relishes, preserves and juice drinks, stewed with cloves or apples.


They are also used as a pretty garnish or in a salad with papaya and pineapple.

Star Fruit Relish:

  • 8 cups of star fruit, thinly sliced and any seeds removed.
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp whole cloves tied in a muslin bag and slightly crushed.
  • 4 cups of sugar
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg( optional) see note below.

Let’s Cook!

Wash and thinly slice the star fruit removing any seeds. Cover with the cider vinegar and stand overnight.

Drain the vinegar add sugar, salt and clove bag. Cook gently until the relish starts to thicken then allow to stand overnight.

In the morning remove the spice bag and reheat the mix after adding the nutmeg if used and bring back to the boil.

If you plan to store the star fruit chutney then omit the nutmeg as it will turn the relish a brown colour although it does add another dimension to the taste.

Put into hot jars and process in a hot water bath for 10 minutes.

Enjoy with some cold meats or on bread and butter.

Chilli? well, I couldn’t do a post without using chilli or three and they are red…

Chilli and Tomato Chutney is a wonderful thing.

This lovely vibrant chilli and tomato chutney gets hotter the longer you keep it if it lasts that long..but is lovely with cold meats, cheese, hot sausages, Pork Pies or just use as a glaze over your meat when you are cooking it or your prawns…it is lovely on your BBQ prawns.


  • 500 gm of mixed tomatoes..some can be green.
  • 4 large red chilli..deseed if you don’t want your chutney too hot or maybe just reduce the chillies.
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced.
  • An inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
  • 300 gm of sugar golden or brown.
  • 100 ml red wine vinegar or balsamic.
  • 2 tbsp of fish sauce.

Let’s Cook!

Skin the tomatoes by putting in hot water. Then add to the food processor with the chilli and ginger.

Blitz…I love that word…

Then put in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Add the sugar, fish sauce and vinegar and bring it to the boil slowly so as not to burn the mixture, keep stirring and then lower heat and let it simmer for 25-35 minutes or until the mixture has gone slightly darker and sticky.

Pour into warm sterilised jars with secure lids.

I turn my jars upside down to get rid of any airlocks until cooled.


This will get hotter the longer it is kept although it doesn’t last that long in this house and by the time my friends have begged a jar from me…They usually return the empty jars hoping I will give them a full one in return…lol


Mango Chutney.


  • 4 Green under-ripe Mangoes.
  • 3cm Fresh ginger finely diced.
  • 3 cloves garlic finely diced.
  • 500 gm sugar.
  • 1tsp salt.
  • 1/2 tsp dried chilli.
  • 1tsp cumin seeds.
  • 2 cardamom plus 4 cardamom seeds.
  • 7cm cinnamon stick.
  • 5 whole cloves.
  • 250 ml vinegar I use Apple cider but have used white vinegar and malt.
  • 5 black peppercorns crushed.

Let’s Cook:

Peel mangoes and cut in small strips.

Place mangoes in a large pot then crush diced ginger and garlic in pestle and mortar and stir into the mangoes.

Stir in sugar,salt,chilli,cumin,cardamom,cinnamon and cloves.Stir to blend. Cover and leave overnight at room temp. N.B. We are prone to ants here so put water into a shallow tray and put the bowl in the centre the ants won’t swim the moat..haha

Next day place mangoes in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Cook stirring occasionally until the mix starts to thicken about 30-45 mins. Stir in vinegar and crushed peppercorns and cook for a further 3 minutes.

Put into warm sterilised jars. Once cooled I keep in the fridge where if you live in cooler climes a cool larder will be fine. This makes 3 medium-sized jars.


Enjoy!  It goes well with my Indian curry recipes.

Beetroot Chutney…

I have always loved beetroot but it has only been since living here that I have used beetroot in different ways…I had only ever eaten it pickled with a salad…

Beetroot grows here which is good it seems that only the root vegetables that need a frost or cooler climate which don’t, Beetroot is also very healthy and my new favourite smoothie is Beetroot and Orange…

Red Beetroot with leaves and one cut beet

A little about the beetroot before I get to the recipe…Packed with essential vitamins, minerals and plant compounds, some of which have medicinal properties. They are low in calories and high in vitamins and minerals…

Beets have high water and low-calorie content. Both of these properties are beneficial for weight loss. I wonder if drinking the juice is what has helped kickstart my weight loss now I am drinking it regularly…

What’s more, they are delicious and easy to add to your diet.

I first made this when we lived in Phuket …I had a request from one of our customers who was an Australian who loved beets and I discovered that Aussies even have beetroot in their burgers…I mean I love beetroot but in a burger but customers come first so my first foray into beetroot chutney was born and it was a hit and from that day forward on the menu at Sugar Reef…

Homemade beetroot chutney

Beetroot Chutney:


  • 1.5k Beetroot.
  • 3 Brown Onions.
  • 3 Apples (Granny Smiths)
  • 450ml Balsamic vinegar.
  • 80ml Fresh Orange Juice.
  • 350gm raw sugar.
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves.
  • 2 large sprigs Rosemary.

Let’s Cook!

Set oven to 200c. Wrap beetroot in foil and bake for 1 hour. Remove from oven and allow to cool.

Chop Onions and Apples finely, chop cooled Beetroot and put in a large pan.

Add remainder of ingredients except for the Rosemary.

Stir until the sugar dissolves, add the Rosemary, reduce heat and simmer for at least 1 hr or until mixture thickens slightly. When ready, remove Rosemary and spoon into sterilised Jars.

Store in a cool, dark place and once open refrigerate…Can be added to your burger or eaten with cold meats…

Onion Chutney…

  • 3 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 3lb cooking Onions
  • 10 oz dark brown sugar
  • 7 fl oz malt vinegar
  • 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 3 cloves garlic – crushed
  • 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • pinch each – salt, paprika
  • 1 small chilli

Let’s Cook!

Peel and slice onions very thinly. Heat oil in a large pan and very gently soften the onions, don’t
let them brown.


Add 3tbsp of the sugar and turn up the heat to colour the onions.


Add rest of sugar and remain ingredients,
simmer for 15 mins to reduce and the mixture turns a thick, dark caramel colour.


Spoon into jars ( about 3 one-pound jars ), and leave for at least a  month before you dig in.

About Carol Taylor:

Enjoying life in The Land Of Smiles I am having so much fun researching, finding new, authentic recipes both Thai and International to share with you. New recipes gleaned from those who I have met on my travels or are just passing through and stopped for a while. I hope you enjoy them.

I love shopping at the local markets, finding fresh, natural ingredients, new strange fruits and vegetable ones I have never seen or cooked with. I am generally the only European person and attract much attention and I love to try what I am offered and when I smile and say Aroy or Saab as it is here in the north I am met with much smiling.

Some of my recipes may not be in line with traditional ingredients and methods of cooking but are recipes I know and have become to love and maybe if you dare to try you will too. You will always get more than just a recipe from me as I love to research and find out what other properties the ingredients I use contain to improve our health and wellbeing.

The environment is also something I am passionate about and there are now regular columns on my blog this year. It is important that we are mindful of the world we live in…We all need to be aware of our home’s carbon footprints…where does our food come from? How far does it travel…Simple to do but if we all did it…Not only would we support local businesses but reduce our carbon footprint…

green foot prints eco system


Exciting for me hence the title of my blog, Retired No One Told Me! I am having a wonderful ride and don’t want to get off, so if you wish to follow me on my adventures, then welcome! I hope you enjoy the ride also and if it encourages you to take a step into the unknown or untried, you know you want to…….Then, I will be happy!

Thank you once again for reading this post I hope you all have a creative week ahead xx

I would also ask that when you are shopping for presents, food, and decorations that you think about its origin and how it was produced…carbon footprint, child labour…Please think about the packaging can it be recycled or reused…Do you really need it? Every little helps…x