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Pindjur - Relish / Spread
Macedonia
  -   Pindjur   |   Serbia   -   Pindzur
Makes
Effort:
Sched:
DoAhead:  
3 cups  
***
3 hrs  
Yes
This condiment or spread, especially popular in Macedonia and Serbia, is similar to Ajvar, but Ajvar never includes eggplant. The name "Pindjur" is used in some regions for both Pindjur and Ajvar. Pindjur is usually made in much larger quantity than this recipe, and exact proportions of the ingredients vary quite a bit (see Note-6).



2
1
1
4
tt
1/2
1/2
2
1/4
#
#
#
cl

T
t
T
c
Peppers (1)
Eggplants
Tomatoes (2)
Garlic
Red Chili, hot (1)
Salt
Sugar
Vinegar (3)
Oil (4)
Prep   -   (1-1/4 hrs)
  1. Preheat Oven to 375°F/190°C (if used (see Note-5)).
  2. Blast PEPPERS black with your Propane Torch. Brush off the skins under running water. Cap and seed them. Chop them fairly small.
  3. Roast EGGPLANTS in the fully preheated oven for around 30 minutes. It should look shriveled.
  4. Peel skins from Eggplants. Chop small to medium.
  5. Scald TOMATOES 1 minute in boiling water, quench in cold water, peel and chop small to medium. Alternatively, you can blast them black with the propane torch, this works fine too (it doesn't work well on eggplant).
  6. Crush GARLIC and chop very fine.
Run   -   (1-3/4 hrs)
  1. In a spacious sauté pan or sauce pan place All Ingredients except Oil. Bring to a simmer stirring now and then.
  2. Add Oil one tablespoon at a time while stirring. Simmer covered 1-1/4 hour, or to get the texture you want.
  3. Uncover and simmer until you have the desired consistency.
NOTES:
  1. Peppers:   Recipes call for various peppers, including red Paprika and Green Hungarian, but most often just "red peppers" without more definition. They usually include some hot red chilis as well. Paprika peppers aren't much available here in Southern California, so I used Red Anaheims, which are plentiful. Seeded, they have just the amount of hotness I usually want, so I do not add hot chilis. If all you can get are red bell peppers, you will have to include some hot chilis, as this condiment should not be completely without heat. If you find it isn't hot enough, you can always hot it up with some chili powder (I use Indian Reshampatti which I always have on hand). For details see our Chilis page.
  2. Tomatoes:   One recipe I have from a Macedonian source calls for "Tomatoes (unripe)", but doesn't give a hint as to how unripe. This is one of the few recipes that doesn't include vinegar. so it probably means fairly green so they are sour. Other recipes do not specify the degree of ripeness, so I presume quite ripe.
  3. Vinegar:   Not all recipes include vinegar, but the majority do (see Note-2).
  4. Oil:   Recipes vary widely as to the amount of oil. My amount is at the low end. Most commonly used in the region is Sunflower Seed oil, which is low cost, but some recipes call for Olive Oil. I don't usually have Sunflower Seed oil on hand because it goes rancid so quickly, so I use Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
  5. Method:   Most recipes call for the Eggplants, Peppers and Tomatoes to be roasted in the oven, then peeled. Except for the Eggplants this makes peeling much more difficult than need be, since everything will be well cooked anyway. I could have peeled the eggplant with a vegetable peeler, but chose to roast it in the oven because it was of rather irregular shape (it was the only one left in my local market Sunday afternoon).
  6. Variations:   While the ingredients are usually pretty much the same, the proportions tend to vary widely. The referenced 1989 cookbook, using the Serbian spelling and attributing it to "Yugoslavia" (which didn't disintegrate until 1991), has equal quantities of Eggplant, Peppers and Tomatoes, but none of the current Internet recipes do. How fine the vegetables are chopped also varies from fine to chunky, but it is never food processor fine.
  7. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste
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