I was going to open this post by talking about the aftermath of last week’s incident but self-pity is very dull indeed, especially when it is your own. So, instead, let’s talk condiments. I have already given you a creamy, herby salad dressing / dip to last the summer, now here is a relish guaranteed to improve any barbecue.
It is spicy and smoky and sweet and sour all at the same time. We have had it with both mackerel and burgers to triumphant effect; at the weekend, D added pineapple chunks and juice and cooked it down even further to make a fruity caramel to serve with pork. This is seriously versatile stuff.
The star ingredient here is the gochujang, which is a Korean chilli paste. It is slightly fermented which gives it a very distinct, albeit hard to describe, flavour profile and is utterly addictive. Korean food is supposed to be on trend at the moment, so you will probably find that gochujang is readily available in larger supermarkets. I couldn’t honestly suggest a substitute.
This recipe makes a large ramekin full of onion jam which is, I recognise, not a particularly useful measurement but the best that I can offer. I have no doubt that it would keep well, in a jar, in the fridge, but we’ve been ploughing through it within a matter of days so have yet to test its powers of longevity.
3 red onions, thinly sliced
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tsp sugar
3 tbsp gochujang
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
Take a large saucepan and set it over a low heat to warm up while you slice the onions and transfer them to a bowl. Toss the onions in the oil, sugar and salt and then place in the saucepan, turn the heat down as low as it will go, and cover.
Meanwhile, place the sultanas in a bowl (you could use the onion one to save on washing up) and cover with water to plump them up.
Cook the onions until soft and golden, stirring occasionally. I gave mine a good hour and they probably could have gone for a bit longer but I was bored!
Stir through the sultanas, the gochujang and the vinegar. Turn the heat up slightly and cook for a further 10 minutes or so until the jam is slightly sticky and just beginning to catch on the bottom of the saucepan. Remove from the heat and allow to cool before serving.