making runner bean chutney

September 10, 2009 at 8:18 am 21 comments

runner bean chutneyEverything runner bean’ sounded like a good place to start while searching for a chutney recipe to make a dent in my runner bean mountain.  Surprisingly this chutney didn’t involve as much boiling and simmering as some softer fruit or vegetable chutney’s I’ve made and thankfully the preparation time was super speedy because I’d grown stringless Polestar runner beans.  I’ve never added cornflour during chutney making before and I can’t say I noticed any thickening benefit inspite of doubling the quantity recommended (time will tell if it’s benefit lies in the maturing of the chutney after bottling).  When the liquid remains quite thin in my chutneys I always keep the leftover juice which explains the vinegar bottle in the background.  runner bean chutney close up

There are a number of interesting runner bean recipes at “Everything runner bean’ and this chutney is a variation of ‘My mum’s recipe‘ (link removed 2018 as this website is no longer on-line).  I doubled the spices and didn’t notice the phased adding of the vinegar, sugar and spices so bunged everything except the cornflour in the pot together right from the start!

making runner bean chutney

  • 2 lb of runner beans, chopped or sliced
  • 1 lb of chopped onions
  • 1½ pint of vinegar
  • 1½ lb of demerara sugar
  • 1.5 tbsp of cornflour (but could be left out?)
  • 1 tbsp of turmeric
  • 1 tbsp of dried mustard

Cook the onions and beans in salted water until soft and then strain.  Return to the pan, add the vinegar and bring to the boil.

Add the dried spices and sugar and boil at a medium heat for about 20 minutes.  Add the cornflour (mixed into a paste with a splash of water first) and reduce the heat.  Simmer until it reaches a thickness you’re happy with or as long as it takes to get your jars ready and tidy up the kitchen.

Pour into warm sterilised jars and cap (the original recipe says not to add lids until the chutney has cooled but I always lid immediately – I’d be interested to know how you do it and what the wisdom is behind either method)

If you like making chutney you may also be interested in these recipes:  Curried apple and carrot chutney, Rhubarb chutneySpiced Damson chutney
Spicy tomato and apple chutney


Entry filed under: allotment tales, in the kitchen. Tags: .

frozen soya chocolate stars making marrow cream (that tastes like lemon curd)

21 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Hazel  |  September 10, 2009 at 8:53 am

    Although I only grow a modest amount of runner beans, there’s always enough for a very similar chutney to the yummy one you have there – it has to be kept virtually under padlock to stop my marauding relatives getting to it!

    Love reading your blog (and super photos too) – and I’ll be checking back to see how Bilbo gets on in his adventures with you!

    • 2. Nip it in the bud  |  September 10, 2009 at 4:26 pm

      hello Ann and Hazel, thank you for popping over from Peggy’s place and leaving your lovely comments. It’s fab to hear people are enjoying the stories and pictures from the plot and it really makes me smile to know you’re trying out the recipes. I made the marrow cream myself this week and it is totally deeeeeeelicious. Unlike Peggy I’m not much of a pie maker but perhaps I’ll cheat with a little frozen puff! Have been busy with Bilbo this week and will be sharing his adventures tomorrow so watch this space. cheerio, N x

      • 3. Ann  |  September 10, 2009 at 6:09 pm

        I usually use bought pastry cases but I also like to do a biscuit base for lemon meringue pie. Half a small packet of digestive biscuits, crushed, two or three spoonsful of drinking chocolate, then melt some butter (a bit more than an ounce probably) in a pan, add the biscuit and choc and stir well, then press into the base of your tin or dish – yum!!!

      • 4. Nip it in the bud  |  September 10, 2009 at 11:18 pm

        I thought so too MC (we have something else in common – no microwave)
        mmmm biscuit bases Ann are my favourite part of a cheesecake so this is a perfect recommendation for me and it’ll stop me eating it straight off the spoon (oops my secret is out now!)

  • 5. Ann  |  September 10, 2009 at 9:12 am

    I always wondered what to do with the ‘runner bean mountain’, also got your idea for the giant courgette problem from Peggy’s blog – thanks!

    What a good idea to freeze the mousse, I love chocolate ice lollies.

  • 6. mangocheeks  |  September 10, 2009 at 4:36 pm

    I have loads of climbing beans, but not enough runner beans, but If I do find myself overflowing with runners beans, I may just try this recipe out.

    Your jars look jolly good!

  • 7. Peggy  |  September 10, 2009 at 11:42 pm

    I always put on the lidswhile the contents are still hot, jam included.I don’t know why but I reckon it gives a vacuum seal and I have never had any trouble with mould etc.I think I will pass on the bean chutney but it is great to have so many different recipes to hand ,tried and tested.

    • 8. Nip it in the bud  |  September 11, 2009 at 6:19 am

      that’s my thinking with the lids too Peggy. Recipes that have had a test run are always more enticing aren’t they :o)

      • 9. Nip it in the bud  |  September 11, 2009 at 9:14 pm

        Peggy, lidding while hot to create a vacuum seal update. I’ve just reboiled some fruit jelly I made on Monday because it hadn’t set properly and when I opened the jars the lids popped proving our theory.

  • 10. Jane  |  September 28, 2009 at 10:08 pm

    I have just this minute finished making a similar recipe to you. First time ever of making chutney but had to do something with a glut of beans! tastes nice on the spoon even if it smells foul cooking! Fingers crossed, I put the lot in jars hot and lids straight on.

    • 11. Nip it in the bud  |  September 28, 2009 at 10:12 pm

      Hi Jane, I’m glad you had a successful virgin chutney making – are you hooked now? It’s a wonderful way to use up all sorts of veg. I can’t leave mine alone and am onto my third jar already – so much for stock piling for winter! It makes a delicious salad dressing.

  • 12. BlueGirl  |  September 9, 2010 at 12:25 pm

    Any update on this chutney a year on?
    I’m at the runner bean mountain stage this year and fancy giving this a try, so any tips would be much appreciated.
    I’ve seen this recipe or very similar on several sites and all say to cool before capping. I’ve always put lids on hot. I take it there were no adverse reactions from doing this?!
    Love the blog btw!

  • 13. Nip it in the bud  |  September 9, 2010 at 10:10 pm

    Hi Bluegirl. Thanks for your kind comments and popping in for a chat :o) This recipe is still one of my faves and has been made again this year. I used red wine vinegar this year instead of cider vinegar so it’s slightly darker in colour but still tastes as yummy.
    I’m a lids while hot gal for sure. Seals just don’t seem as good once it’s cooled and I’ve lost a couple of things stored in oil or syrup which kind of proves the point that hot is good!
    You won’t be disappointed. Enjoy x

  • 14. Fiona Mayhem  |  December 1, 2010 at 10:40 pm

    Hello, I’ve just found this blog, and can I commend you on making Green Bean Chutney! It has been a firm favourite in our family for three generations now. I used to have Green Bean Chutney on cheese in my sandwiches at school, and all the other kids thought I was cruelly forced to eat weird food.

    I make it every year (in fact, we grow extra beans for this very reason), and am now getting requests from friends. I am so loathe to give it away.

    I am also happy to report that it works for french beans as well, or mixture of runners and french.

    I am glad you are making it, ‘cos the more people that know the recipe, the more chance I have of not having to give some away every year!

    • 15. Nip it in the bud  |  December 2, 2010 at 11:49 am

      I’m like that with Green Tomato Chutney – very loathe to part with it. Also this years Piccalilli which has been made a couple of times to cope with my own addiction and demand!
      I actually grew less beans this year as I just couldn’t keep up with the harvest last year. As well as making heaps of chutney I froze some beans. Big mistake as they stayed in the freezer for the whole year and were then ditched to make room for raspberries. The shame of it!

  • 16. Fiona Mayhem  |  December 2, 2010 at 12:03 pm

    What a shame! I am so addicted to runner beans that we never grow so many I can’t do something with them, and then, of course, there is all that lovely chutney. If they get too big, I find you can save and dry the beans out of their pods, for either growing next year or using in the same way as you do borlotti beans (another favourite). I have also never had to buy a pack or runner bean seeds, I inherited the originals from my dad, and have kept the strain going ever since.

  • 17. narf77  |  January 5, 2013 at 6:27 pm

    SO glad I just found your blog! I love your blog, your ethos and these wonderful recipes 🙂

    • 18. Nip it in the bud  |  January 6, 2013 at 10:34 pm

      thank you, I was sad not to have any beans to harvest this year for this recipe but summer will come again and I’ll have a toddler to help me out this time!

      • 19. narf77  |  January 6, 2013 at 10:46 pm

        We have bean future promises but the possums have been raiding the vines through the bird netting that we put over the top of them and have managed to completely de-leaf all of my purple king beans. That leaves most of the scarlet runners (that didn’t poke outside the enclosed area and get scoffed by the waiting wallabies…), a crop of borlotti’s and some yin/yang beans to hopefully give us something to eat this year. I have Earl…he is a 2 year old American Staffy who is just like a toddler but with bigger teeth. Whatever goes into his mouth isn’t worth retrieving and beans are something that he would be most interested in 😉

  • 20. trish  |  August 26, 2013 at 4:07 pm

    how many jars do it make going to try and make some first year for growing beans got loads freezed them ate hubby said he got them coming out his ears

  • […] If you still have runner beans to use up after trying this recipe you might like my runner bean chutney post. […]


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About Nip it in the bud

Welcome to my blog about growing and cooking allotment veg since 2009 and growing sweet boys since 2012. Take a walk with us through our life in Gloucester with a boy, a baby and 3 cats.

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