Relish is a condiment that is a combination of cooked and chopped vegetables and/or fruits blended together with other seasonings. Relish enhances the flavor of other foods. Today’s column highlights a product with many differences and many cultures.
Relish originated in India; it is safe to say every country (region) of the world has a relish they call their own. In India three different chutneys (relishes) are eaten each day with their meals; depending on the meal determines the chutney.
For approximately 187 years Gentlemen’s Relish has been produced in England. John Osborn created in 1828 a blend of anchovies, butter, herbs and spices. Until this day the recipe is still a secret – only ONE employee at Elsenham Quality Foods, the licensed manufacturer, knows the entire recipe. The company makes a similar product called Poacher’s Relish made from smoke salmon and lemon.
As I am very fond of relishes, I am sharing several different recipes with you to try. It is believed that relish was created to preserve summer crops for winter use. All the relishes with the exception of the Fresh Cucumber and Onion Relish can be “canned or preserved” to use later in the following manner: Ladle finished product into thoroughly washed glass jars including lids. Fill to within ¼ inch of the top, wipe rim and seal with 2-part lid. Process in rolling hot water bath. Cool jars in water, continuing to cool jars on rack or towels. You know the canning process has taken when the inner lid (not the ring) is inverted with no wiggle room when cooled.
Red Pepper RelishBette’s Blue Ribbon Winner
• 15 large red peppers*• 4 small onions
• 3 cups granulated sugar• 2 tbsp. coarse salt
• 2 cups cider vinegarA food processor/blender is the easiest way to chop onions and peppers coarsely, add remaining ingredients and simmer until very thick, about one hour. Process 7 to 8 minutes or refrigerate.
*For a delightful holiday relish, try using 10 red and 5 green peppers. This recipe makes 3 to 4 pints – make in half-pints for gift giving.
Pineapple ChutneyOffering of India
• 2 cans (20 oz.) crushed pineapple, drained
• 4 cups chopped onions• 3 cups packed brown sugar
• 2 cups golden raisins• 2 cups cider vinegar
• 2 tsp. salt• 2 tsp. mustard seeds
• 2 tsp. ground turmeric• 4 tsp. grated orange peel
• 2 tsp. grated lemon peel• 2 medium yellow banana peppers, seeded and chopped - (hot or sweet)
Combine all of the ingredients in a large pot or saucepan – bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to simmer, uncovered, for 1 to 1½ hours or until reaches desired thickness. Process for 15 minutes or refrigerate.
Sweet Corn with Sweet Pepper Relish
Heartlands of America• 1 lb. fresh or frozen corn kernels (4 to 5 cobs)
• 1 red bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
• 1 green bell pepper, seeded and finely chopped
• 1 large white onion, finely chopped
• 1 ½ cups cider vinegar• ½ cup sugar
• 2 to 3 tsp. salt or to taste• 2 tsp. yellow mustard seeds
• 2 tsp. ground turmericCut corn (uncooked) from cob or use frozen corn.
Combine all ingredients in large pot over medium-low heat, cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally – or until sugar had dissolved. Bring to a boil, reduce to low and simmer for additional 40 to 45 minutes, or until mixture reduced and thickened. Process for 15 minutes or refrigerate.
Red Beets and Horseradish Relish**
Eastern European5 (14½ oz.) cans cut red beets
6½ to 8 oz. raw bottled horseradish
2 to 3 tbsp. sugar¼ cup white vinegar
Drain red beets, set liquid aside. Carefully grind beets fine. Fold in the remaining ingredients. If mixture appears to be dry, add some of beet juice that is set aside. Process 7 to 8 minutes or refrigerate.
** You can use fresh beets and horseradish. If using fresh beets, they need to be cooked before grinding.
Cucumber and Onion RelishEasy Cold Relish from Your Kitchen
• 1 medium cucumber• 1 medium red onion
• ¼ cup white, cider or flavored vinegar
• 1 tbsp. sugar• 1 tsp. salt• Cracked pepper to taste
Remove peel from onion and cucumber peels if desire. Finely chop and blend cucumber and onion together. Sprinkle in sugar and salt. Combine with vinegar. Add cracked pepper to taste. Refrigerate and allow to set for several hours before serving so flavors blend. A great side for many dishes – a new fresh twist for hot dogs and burgers.