Here in Moscow lots of people head out to the summer house (dacha) for the weekend in search of peace and quiet and fresh air – with this comes fresh fruit, fresh vegetables and bbq’s.
At our summer house we have a huge redcurrant bush which since moving to Moscow I had never seen or tasted a redcurrant before. So my new quest was to pick some of these beautiful red fruits and try and come up with a recipe to use them in. My first thoughts were leaning towards a condiment to meat and cheese so I decided to search for recipes for chutneys and relishes. After careful studying of various recipes I came up with an adapted one to suit what ingredients I can get here in Moscow.
Redcurrant and onion relish
• 2 medium red onions , peeled and cut into thin wedges
• 1 small red pepper , seeded and cut into small chunks
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 1 plump red chilli , seeded and chopped
• 2 large garlic cloves , chopped
• 1 small knob fresh ginger , chopped
• 200ml red wine vinegar
• 140g light muscovado sugar
• 1 tsp five spice powder
• 200g redcurrants , stripped from stalks
Toss the onions with the red pepper and the oil, then fry in a frying pan for 5-8 mins over a high heat until lightly charred and softened. Remove from the pan and set aside.
Put the chilli, garlic and ginger in the pan with half the vinegar. Bring to the boil then simmer for 2-3 mins. Add the onions and pepper plus the remaining vinegar, all the sugar, spice and 1 tsp salt.
Bring to the boil then bubble away for about 5 mins until thickened. Add redcurrants and simmer for about 5 mins more, or until they have burst, but still have some shape and the liquid is syrupy.
Remove and pour into a large heatproof jar. Cover and seal while hot. Keeps in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.