Seasonal Surprises: Savory Blueberry Chutney

My first taste of Sheila Lukins came after stumbling across The Silver Palate food shop on Columbus Avenue, NYC in the late 1970s.  It was a short road to discovering chutney wasn’t just a mango and ginger concoction.  Sheila Lukins of Silver Palate Cookbook fame was cutting edge back then.  I was hooked from that first taste all the way to mixing things up with blueberry chutney to glaze Asian style roast chicken.

Blueberry chutney was the inspiration for my Spicy Blueberry Barbecue Sauce, an original recipe that made me a national award winner in the Highbush Blueberry Council’s 2008 recipe contest.  Who’da thunk?  Next month will mark two years since Sheila Lukins died -- too young but not without having made her mark on a generation of home cooks like me.

This recipe is adapted from an original Silver Palate recipe.  Over the years, I’ve added and subtracted this or that.  Serve with roasted turkey, duck or goose, meat or curries.  Hint: Mix a tablespoon of chutney with with 1/2 cup mayonnaise or plain yogurt and make a tasty dressing for turning chunks of leftover roast turkey or chicken into a yummy salad.

4 cups fresh blueberries, rinsed and stemmed

1 teaspoon yellow mustard seed

1 tablespoon grated crystallized ginger

1/2 teaspoon ground Ceylon cinnamon (regular Cassia cinnamon will do)

1 medium shallot, grated (or one small onion)

Dash of salt

1 teaspoon orange zest
1-1/4 cups red wine vinegar

Dash ground nutmeg

1/2 cup golden raisins

1/2 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes

1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar                                                                                       

Place blueberries in 4 quart saucepan; add all other ingredients. Bring mixture to a boil; simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 45 minutes, or until chutney is thick.

Meanwhile, wash 4 half pint jars. Keep hot until needed. Prepare lids as manufacturer directs. Ladle the hot chutney into 1 hot jar at a time, leaving 1/2 inch head space. Wipe jar rim with a clean, damp cloth. Attach lid. Fill and close remaining jars. Process in a boiling water bath for 20 minutes. Remove from water bath and set on a flat surface covered with a clean dish towel to cool. When you hear the tops pop, the seal has been set.

Unopened jars store well for about a year. Once opened, refrigerate and use within 3 weeks.


  1. happy belated bastile day .... you have been busy. the blog's new look is great. these recipes look great !! love the idea of a blueberry bbq sauce. thanks!!


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