Green Tomato Relish – A Winning Recipe

Every year I find myself looking at piles and piles of produce and wondering what to do with it.  This year is no exception so I thought I’d share this recipe again.

By this time (approaching September), my pantry is already jammed full of tomato sauce and paste, barbecue sauce, salsa, green beans, cherry syrup (great on chocolate waffles), blueberry, blackberry and cherry jam and pie filling and a whole lot of applesauce.

I have the added problem of having a husband who is diabetic so my recipes have to be healthy and low sugar.

So, every year I look to the Internet for new and different ideas.  It’s how I found this year’s favorite recipe – Green Tomato Relish.  This no sugar recipe is a winner not only because of the fabulous flavor but also because it helps use up all those green tomatoes clinging to the vines that I can see every time I look out my back window.

I made some variations on this already fabulous recipe that made it perfect for our palates.  Here’s what I changed:

  1. Red onions instead of white or yellow – grown by me and so sweet you can almost eat them whole.
  2. Sweet Italian Peppers – again out of my garden and so sweet it’s sometimes hard to make it from the backyard to the kitchen without eating them.
  3. No cumin, no cilantro, not because I can’t raise them (I can’t) but because we don’t like cilantro and we only like cumin in chili and burritos.
  4. Only 2 teaspoons of salt for a triple batch (that’s right, I tripled the recipe).

These small changes and the use of Bragg’s Organic Cider Vinegar made this Green Tomato Relish sweeter, tangier and downright exotic.

I used a heavy duty stainless steel pot for cooking down the veggies, layering them as I cut them – tomatoes on the bottom, apples next, peppers, garlic then onions on top.  It looked like veggie confetti when I was done.

Once I poured the vinegar on, I brought the pot to a boil then turned it down and simmered it for about 3 hours, letting the flavors merge and the vinegar infuse the relish.

NOTE:  DON’T PUREE unless you want it less chunky.  Slow cooking blends the flavors and softens the veggies but keeps the integrity and taste of each.

Jar it (you know the drill, sterilized jars, lids soaked in hot water to soften the seal) then water bath quarts for 25 minutes for quarts and 15 minutes for pints.

This stuff is so good, I eat it with a spoon, serve it as a side dish and plan on giving it for Christmas gifts.

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