Sunday, October 11, 2009

Green Tomato Mincemeat

Green Tomato Mincemeat

I grew up with mincemeat pie, but only meat mincemeat, venison or beef neck, always made by Grandma, and I loved it as my absolute favorite holiday -- Thanksgiving and Christmas -- treat, as I wrote about here. But when I was working on Tomato Imperative! I realized that I would have to come up with a green tomato mincemeat. I was inspired by a cover photo of a handsome, rustic, double-crust tart made by Nick Malgieri for a glossy food magazine.

To keep it in line with Grandma's mincemeat, I used suet as the fat for a distinctive flavor, though you may substitute butter if you like. I wanted a sophisticated Italian twist to it which I provided with the addition of pine nuts and sherry.

This is yummy as a chutney accompaniment to a roast. As well, it has an affinity to cream cheese when spread on thin slices of brown bread, or, another time, served in tiny demitasse cups with good thick jersey cream over all for a special dessert. Most wonderfully of all, it is used in the filling of the Italian Green Tomato Mincemeat Tart, the recipe for which you will find in Tomato Imperative! but that I will give you later on, closer to the holidays.

Now, though, is the time to gather those last green tomatoes and make them into this sumptuous thing.

It keeps practically forever in the fridge, but you may can it in pint jars in a boiling water bath for 20 minutes to be safe.

Green Tomato Mincemeat
Makes about 3 cups, enough for one tart, but can be doubled
  • 2 ounces beef suet, chopped
  • 3 green tomatoes (1 lb), cored and chopped
  • 1 large apple, cored and chopped
  • zest and juice of 1 lemon
  • zest and juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar, cider, or hard cider
  • 1 quarter-sized round of fresh gingerroot, smashed and chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 onion, sliced in 1-inch shards
  • 1 1/4 cups brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1/4 cup dry sherry
  • 4 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
  • More liqueur -- sherry, dark rum, or Calvados for preservation
In a large, heavy-bottomed pan, render the suet over medium heat until crackling. Stir in green tomatoes, apple, zests and juices, vinegar, gingerroot, nutmeg, onion, brown sugar, cinnamon, coriander, and salt. Cook over low heat with the cover cocked, stirring often, for about 2 hours, until condensed and syrupy.

Meanwhile, put the raisins to macerate in the sherry.

When the mixture is very thick, correct the seasonings, stir in the raisins, sherry, and pine nuts.
Add up to a cup of liqueur -- to taste -- and bring back to a simmer for 3 minutes, then put into jars if you are not serving it in the near future.
Green Tomato Mincemeat

1 comment:

A Year on the Grill said...

I love your recipes...

Just found my farmer's market this year, now schedule about an every other week trip...Greta posts