Homemade Ajvar / Domaći ajvar

Ajvar is a kitchen staple around these parts and while supermarkets offer a vast variety, I’ve decided to try and make my own for the first time ever, as peppers and eggplants are in season and dirt cheap at the moment. The process may seem a bit lengthy, but I think it’s most definitely worth it. Plus, it’s easier if you spread it during the couple of days and not try to squeeze everything in a single afternoon.

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A little heads up, though; it might seem to you that you have a ton of food when you start. But everything will cook down, a lot. I ended up with less than I hoped for. Still, I think I might do another batch, as the active work is not too terrible.

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INGREDIENTS:

(yields about 5 cups) = 0.58 EUR per cup, = 2.89 EUR for the whole batch

2 kilos red bell peppers (1.33 EUR, marketplace)

1 kilo eggplant (0.8 EUR, marketplace)

2 chili peppers (0.13 EUR, marketplace)

2 whole garlic heads (0.4 EUR, marketplace)

¼ cup apple cider vinegar (0.07 EUR)

½ cup vegetable oil, divided (0.13 EUR)

1 tbsp sugar (0.01 EUR)

1 heaping tsp salt (0.01 EUR)

Black pepper to taste (0.01 EUR)

METHOD:

Preheat oven to 220°C. Line 2 baking sheets with aluminum foil. Wash peppers, eggplant and chili peppers and pat dry. Deseed peppers and cut stems of eggplant, spread over baking sheets together with garlic heads and chili peppers and bake for 30-40 minutes, until skins of eggplant and peppers are black. Once done, put everything in a large covered bowl or a zip lock bag and let cool completely. You want everything covered as this will help to loosen the skins off peppers.

Once cool, drain of any liquids, peel the skins of peppers, eggplant and garlic and discard seeds from chili peppers if you want a milder dip. Add vinegar, salt, sugar and about half the oil and blitz in a food processor to make a paste. You can leave it a bit chunky if that’s what you prefer.

Put paste in a deep pot to cook on medium heat for about 30-45 minutes, until ajvar thickens, stirring frequently. Reserve about 2-3 tbsp of remaining oil for later and gradually stir in more oil as ajvar cooks. Oil is to prevent it from spoiling, but be careful to not overdo with it, as the spread will taste greasy.

If canning, prepare your jars while ajvar is cooking and make sure to preheat oven to 100°C, as you’ll put jars in the oven for final seal. Once ajvar thickens taste for seasoning, add more salt and black pepper if necessary and fill the jars, making sure to squeeze everything down with a spoon so there are no air bubbles inside the jars. Spread everything evenly with back of the spoon once jars are filled, carefully wipe jar rims and place in the oven for 10-15 minutes, until crust forms. Remove jars from the oven, drip the remaining oil on top to cover ajvar in a thin film, screw lids on tightly and leave to cool completely before storing in a cool dark place.

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Iako su police dućana krcate ajvarom, ove sam godine odlučila po prvi puta napraviti svoj domaći, a posebno jer je sezona paprika i patliđana pa su i jeftini. Sam postupak je možda poduži, ali ja mislim da se zbog konačnog proizvoda isplati. A i lakše je ako posao raspodijelite na nekoliko dana i ne pokušate sve ugurati u jedno poslijepodne.

Samo mala napomena; možda vam se čini da imate gomilu hrane kada počnete, ali to će se sve iskuhati. Meni je na kraju ispalo manje nego što sam se nadala. Svejedno, mislim da ću napraviti još jednu turu, jer samog aktivnog posla i nema toliko strašno puno.

SASTOJCI:

(za cca 5 šalica, ili 3 male teglice) = 4,34 kn po šalici, = 7,23 kn po teglici, = 21,70 kn za sve

2 kg crvenih paprika roga (10,00 kn, tržnica)

1 kg patliđana (6,00 kn, tržnica)

2 ljute papričice (1,00 kn, tržnica)

2 cijela češnja češnjaka (3,00 kn, tržnica)

¼ šalice jabučnog octa (0,5 kn)

½ šalice ulja (1,00 kn)

1 žličica soli (0,05 kn)

1 žlica šećera (0,05 kn)

Crnog papra po želji (0,1 kn)

PRIPREMA:

Zagrijte pećnicu na 220°C. Obložite dva lima za pećenje sa aluminijskom folijom. Dobro operite paprike, patliđane i čili papričice i posušite ih kuhinjskom krpom. Očistite paprike od sjemenki, odrežite peteljke patliđanima i rasporedite po limovima sa čilijima i češnjakom, pa pecite 30-40 minuta, dok im koža ne pocrni. Kad je sve gotovo, stavite u poklopljenu posudu ili u zavezanu vrećicu dok se ne skroz ne ohladi. To će pomoći da kože skliznu sa paprika i patliđana.

Ocijedite tekućinu koja se skupila, ogulite patliđane, paprike i češnjak, izvadite čilijima sjemenke ako želite blaži ajvar te sve usitnite u blenderu skupa sa octom, soli, šećerom i polovicom ulja. Po želji ostavite i malo krupnijih komadića.

Dobivenu pastu stavite u dublji lonac na umjerenu vatru i kuhajte, često miješajući, oko 30-45 minuta, dok se ajvar ne zgusne. Kako kuhate, postepeno dodajte u ajvar preostalo ulje, a 2-3 žlice sačuvajte za kasnije. Ulje pomaže za konzerviranje da se ajvar kasnije ne pokvari, ali pazite da ne pretjerate da vam ne ispadne premasno.

Ako želite konzervirati ajvar, priredite i dobro operite sve staklenke dok se ajvar kuha i ugrijte pećnicu na 100˘C, jer ćete kasnije staviti staklenke da se zapečate. Kad se ajvar ukuhao na željenu gustoću, provjerite okus te po potrebi dodajte još soli i crnog papra po želji. Punite staklenke pazeći da žlicom istisnete van što više zraka. Na kraju poravnajte vrh, obrišite pažljivo rubove staklenki i stavite ih u pećnicu na 10-15 minuta dok se ne uhvati korica. Izvadite staklenke iz pećnice, nakapajte po vrhu ostatak ulja da ajvar bude prekriven tankim filmom, dobro zatvorite staklenke i ostavite da se do kraja ohlade prije nego što ih odložite na tamno i hladnije mjesto.

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Homemade Ajvar / Domaći ajvar

3 thoughts on “Homemade Ajvar / Domaći ajvar

  1. […] Preheat oven to 200°C. Wash, peel and halve or quarter all the veggies. Toss with coconut oil, salt and pepper and spread on a baking sheet. Roast from 45 minutes up to one hour, until veggies are softened and slightly caramelized. Stir once halfway through roasting to ensure even doneness. Serve dolloped with pesto or any other sauce of your choice. […]

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