Provence Copycat: Eggplant Garlic Chutney

Here’s a wonderful recipe for your Christmas table. We bought a few jars of a splendid eggplant garlic chutney at the markets in Provence. It’s addicting. So naturally, I needed to make some more, since we hadn’t eaten it in five months. Tex and I were both pleasantly surprised with the results…

And then I remembered that I had saved the jar from Provence (which was empty by all accounts except my own) in the back of the fridge. I pulled it out, perused the ingredients on the label while making notes for how to improve the recipe next time, and scraped out a bit to taste. All I can say is that this recipe comes quite close to the taste of the original!

That jar of chutney is the one I found in my fridge… empty.

Some notes for adjusting in the future:

  • Roast the eggplant and garlic in the oven before adding to the pot.
  • Add a teaspoon (or more?) of herbs de Provence.
  • Possibly add a roasted bell pepper and/or sun-dried tomato slices.

So, without further ado, here is the recipe that I made today. Making the above changes is totally optional… If you only have the ingredients below, just go for it! It’s really quite delicious. Do note that the recipe calls for one and a half heads of garlic, which sounds like a ton, but it’s what makes this chutney so flavorful.

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 eggplants (chopped into approx. 1 inch cubes)
  • 1 1/2 heads of garlic (peel each clove)
  • 1 small red onion (chopped)
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • Pinch of cumin
  • 3/4 c. apple cider vinegar
  • Water
  • 1/3 c. granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt

DIRECTIONS

  • Place the chopped eggplant into a colander and sprinkle with 1 Tbsp. salt. Coat the eggplant well with the salt, then let sit for about an hour. Rinse eggplant with cold water to remove the salt. Dry the eggplant with a paper towel.
  • In a pot, over medium heat, pour olive oil and cook the onion till translucent. Add cumin and cook for another minute.
  • Add the eggplant and garlic. Cook for 5-10 minutes. Add the apple cider vinegar, sugar, and enough water to almost cover (I added 1 1/4 cups). Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Leave simmering for 45-60 minutes, until the mixture begins to thicken.
  • Stir in salt. Then transfer the mixture to a food processor and puree.

It’s as easy as that! I will be serving this on a cheese board for Christmas, paired with homemade sourdough bread (baguette would be a great option too!) and spreadable goat cheese.

Bon appétit!

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