Thursday, September 23, 2010

Tomato Jam

Here's a food quirk about me that I'll let you in on (that is, if you don't know me in real life).  I don't like ketchup.  It feels so anti-American to say that, but it's true.  I really can't stand it.  There are a lot of foods that I don't like, but I can at least tolerate.  I might like the way they smell, but not care for the taste or the texture.  But when it comes to ketchup, I can't even stomach the smell.  Yuck.

My husband isn't a huge ketchup eater either.  He doesn't hate it like I do, but he doesn't need to have it in the house.  I checked the fridge, and we do have a bottle of ketchup in there, but I'm pretty sure it's from the last time we had people over for a party (maybe Father's Day???). 

Marisa at Food in Jars posted this Tomato Jam recipe on her blog recently.  I'm surprised to admit that it intrigued me (being that I'm so anti-ketchup).  I had slightly under 5 pounds of tomatoes in my freezer.  **As a side note, did you know that you can freeze your tomatoes whole?  Well, now you know.**  I decided to give the Tomato Jam a try.  Well...not 'a try' as in 'I'll actually taste it', because I don't intend to eat it.  I have no problem cooking foods that I don't like just to please others.  I do it all the time.  Probably half of the stuff I canned this year I won't eat.  It's no biggie.

I chopped up the frozen tomatoes as well as the last bit of cherry tomatoes I'll probably get this year (just so I'd make it to 5 pounds).  Well, maybe I should say slightly defrosted tomatoes.  I took them out of the freezer for about 2 hours and they were still pretty solid.  It actually made them really easy to cut up.  The only downside was that the peels were coming off.  Not too bad if you're using a recipe that calls for peeled tomatoes.  However, in this recipe, Marisa notes that the peels are neccessary.  I did my best to keep as many of the peels on the tomatoes as possible.

Then I added the freshly grated ginger and lime juice.

And finally, the salt, sugar and spices were added.

After mixing everything together, this is what it looked like.  I guess tomatoes can macerate just like other fruit.  I was surprised (but I guess I shouldn't have makes sense).

After simmering for about 1 1/2 hours, this is what it looked like.  It was relatively thick and jam-like.  It cooked down by about 1/2.

I ended up with 5 half pint jars and 3 quarter pint jars.  Less than what the original recipe lists.  I'm guessing I may have cooked it down too much, but I didn't think it was thick enough until the 1 1/2 hours were finished.

Now, you may be wondering, "Adrienne...what are you going to do with that Tomato Jam?"'s going to be gifted to family and friends.  I'm thinking of marketing it as Adult Ketchup, Ketchup for Grown Ups or Ketchup for the Finer Palate.  That's what it sounded like to me after reading Marisa's description.  She said it can be used in place of ketchup (such as on top of a burger) or paired with a soft, stinky cheese.

This post is linked to Simple Lives Thursday.


  1. This recipe sounds like just what I have been looking for, thanks.


  2. I had noticed this at Food in Jars also, and have thought about making some. I am NOT a big catsup person either. You finished jars look great.

  3. I made that same recipe via Food in Jars. I halved the sugar and added applesauce instead, blended it and I call it ketchup.

  4. I think I might make this with the rest of my tomatoes. Thanks for the recipe!

  5. I've heard of this before. I admit that I'm skeptical. I do love tomatoes, though.


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