G21 Processing food – making pickles and chutneys

Food SecurityFood Processing
  • In some cultures, making pickles or chutneys is very common. In others it may be a new idea. It is a good way of preserving vegetables and can add flavour when they are eaten with staple foods. Chutney is a sweet, spicy preserve. Pickles are usually less sweet and more spicy or hot.
  • Foods such as tomatoes (red or green), onions, carrots, green mangoes, green beans and pumpkins all make good chutneys or pickles.


  • If possible, obtain a recipe book to get more accurate quantities of vegetables and spices. If one is not available, then experiment with these guidelines and what is available locally.
  • Encourage each participant to try making one variety, using different mixes of vegetables and spices and noting the ingredients. Afterwards have a meeting to taste all the different products.
  • Invite others to taste these products to encourage their interest.
  • What possibilities are there for selling chutneys and pickles locally or in nearby towns?
  • Chutney recipe…
    • Ten cups of chopped vegetables (use a mixture of several)
    • One to two cups of chopped onion
    • Three cups of vinegar
    • Three cups of sugar
    • Three teaspoons each of ground ginger, mustard seeds, cinnamon or other similar spices
    • Salt and pepper
    • Cook in a large pan. Bring to the boil and cook for 30–50 minutes, stirring regularly.
    • Cool a little and pour into clean jars, first wrapping each jar in a damp cloth to prevent cracking.
    • Use undamaged lids and, if possible, first cover with plastic to prevent the vinegar damaging the metal lids.
    • For pickles add the same amount of vinegar but just one to two cups of sugar and plenty of chilli, mustard seeds, and other similar available spices.