Red Bell Pepper (Capsicum) Relish:
Makes about two medium-sized jars of finished relish.
Prep: 20 mins
Cooking: About an hour
Course: relish – used for pepping up cold meats, etc.
Rating: 2: Easy.
- 1 kg red bell peppers (or any other type of red capsicum pepper)
- 330g onions
- 3 big cloves garlic
- 100g golden caster sugar
- 50ml red wine vinegar
- 1 lemon
- Ground chilli flakes to taste. I don’t like too much!
- Halve the peppers, cut round the stalk stem and take out the seed head, then slap it onto the chopping board to knock out the remaining seeds, and then cut each half into quarters.
- Use a food processor and blitz ‘em. If you don’t have a food processor, then stand there and chop them into the smallest pieces that you can.
- Put the resulting chopped mess into a colander, sitting on a bowl to let the excess moisture drain off.
- Peel and quarter the onions together with the garlic and then process them in the same way, into small chippings. Put those in the colander with the peppers. Leave them to sit for half an hour if possible (the more moisture drains away, the less runny your finished relish will be).
- Pop the drained peppers, onions, garlic and vinegar into the saucepan and put it onto the heat.
- Cut the lemon into quarters and pop that into the saucepan as well. Keep stirring because you do not want it to catch, overheat and spoil the colour.
- When it comes to the boil, turn it down to minimum, pop a lid half on and let it sit there happily bubbling away to itself for 30 mins.
- When the 30 mins is up, remove each bit of lemon, scraping the flesh into the saucepan and discarding just the peel (the pips will cook down).
- Weigh out the sugar and add it to the saucepan.
- Bring it back to the boil and put it on the smallest ring at the lowest setting. Put the lid half on and let it do its stuff. About every 10 mins give it a good stir and see how it’s doing. Most of the liquid needs to evaporate. The colour will darken with the time it is on the cooker, so go for the combination you want. Colour, dryness of the mixture and taste.
- Remove it from the heat and spoon it into sterilised jars (see Tricks’n’Tips) whilst it is still hot. Fill to within 2mm of the rim of the jar. Put a preserving disc of greaseproof paper in the neck of the jar before screwing on the lid. It’ll keep for months in a coolish cupboard, unopened.
- Once opened, this relish will be ok in the fridge for a month or so, but it isn’t something that will hang about for long simply because it tastes so nice!