Bacon rarebit with apple chutney

Bacon rarebit with apple chutney

Home Comforts
Yuki Sigura

I love rarebit and, when you make a batch of the cheese sauce at home, it can sit in the fridge, covered, for about a week, ready to use on toast or just as it is here. It is even great spooned over cooked smoked fish such as haddock. Use a good cheddar though and don’t boil it, or the fat will spill out of the cheese and the mixture will split.


Quantity Ingredient

For the apple chutney

Quantity Ingredient
150g soft light brown sugar
100g sultanas
125ml malt vinegar
2 eating apples, roughly chopped
3 tomatoes, roughly chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper

For the rarebit

Quantity Ingredient
8 rashers dry-cured back bacon
350g grated mature cheddar cheese
50ml beer, (I mean ale, not lager)
1 teaspoon english mustard
3-4 dashes tabasco sauce
1 teaspoon worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons plain flour
4 thick slices white bread


  1. To sterilise jars for keeping preserves, you have two choices. Either place the jars in a dishwasher on a normal cycle, then fill (taking care not to touch any of the inside of the jar or lid). Or wash the jars in hot soapy water, dry carefully, then place in an oven preheated to 150°C for 15 minutes. Remove carefully and fill immediately.
  2. To make the chutney, heat a sauté pan until hot, add the brown sugar and sultanas and heat until just melting. Don’t stir, but swirl the pan from time to time. Add the vinegar and cook until totally dissolved and starting to caramelise, then add the apples, tomatoes and onion and cook for 10 minutes until the apple is tender and the mixture thickened. Season with salt, remove from the heat and decant into a sterilised jar or jars while both chutney and jar are still hot.
  3. For the rarebit, preheat the grill to high. Place the bacon on a tray and grill for four to six minutes, turning once, until the rashers are golden at the edges and just cooked through.
  4. Place the cheese and beer into a frying pan and heat over a low heat until the cheese starts to melt. Heat until bubbling and smooth, then stir in the mustard, Tabasco and Worcestershire sauces, then stir in the flour and cook until just thickened. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Meanwhile, toast the bread on each side then lay into an ovenproof dish. Top each piece with two rashers of the bacon and spoon the cheese mixture over the top.
  6. Grill for two or three minutes until golden and bubbling. Serve with a dollop of apple chutney.
James Martin
Saturday Kitchen
comfort food
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