Many of the recipes Tara Stow uses for her small batch jams, sauces and chutneys like this come from turn of the century cookbooks she's collected over the years. We're not talking Betty Crocker circa 1976, but ingredients and techniques that Laura Ingalls Wilder would have recognized.
That's not to say that Tara assuages modern conveniences and safety measures when creating her chutney... but it's still a lot of work for a one-woman operation. Using tomatoes she picked and froze last summer, Tara mixes in her own blend of herbs and spices and ingredients (some of which come from her own garden) to make this versatile chutney. What I love about it is how balanced it feels. Tomato products in general can be too acidic or even bitter and chutneys have a tendency to be too sharp as well as bitter. Add all that up and you'd expect this chutney to be doubly sharp, doubly bitter, but it amazingly is not (and that's why I think it's pretty great).
Let's not forget that there's a sweetness to tomatoes as well. All in all, it's a complex roller coaster of sweet and savory and sharp and soft flavors bouncing over an herbaceous base. Mix with regular tomato sauce to give pasta night a bit of fun. Slather on toasted bread and drizzle with a glug of good olive oil and a shower of sea salt for a great (and easy) appetizer.