Spicy Tomato Ketchup

Image of baskets full of fruit and vegetables

The kitchen garden is stuffed to bursting with fruit and veg and we’ve just spent a highly satisfactory afternoon harvesting the fruits of our labours.

Him Outdoors has slaved endlessly over the past four years to turn what was a nettle patch into a productive garden and it’s really paying off.

Of course that means we have vast quantities of things like beans, courgettes, cucumbers and tomatoes.

Then a good friend and neighbour arrived the other day with another big basket of toms.

Image of a basket of tomatoes

I never look a gift tomato in the mouth so we set to work to make one of our storecupboard staples, spicy tomato ketchup.

This is from Oded Schwartz’s Preserving, my all-time favourite book on pickling.

Spicy Tomato Ketchup

  • Servings: makes about 3 bottles
  • Print

Ingredients:

2 kg (approx 4lb) tomatoes

500 g (1lb) shallots or onions

75 g (2 1/2 oz) fresh ginger root, peeled

6 garlic cloves, peeled

3-4 chillies, deseeded

6 celery stalks, with leaves if possible

Image of the supporting ingredients for the ketchup

For the spice bag:

2 tbspn coriander seeds

1 tspn cloves

1 tspn crumbled mace blades

For every 1 litre (1 3/4 pints) of pulp:

250 ml (8 fl oz) cider vinegar

75 g (2 1/2 oz) soft brown or white sugar

2 tspn salt

1 tbspn sweet paprika

Method:

Coarsely chop the tomatoes, onion, ginger, garlic and chillies in a food processor.

Put the mixture into a preserving pan. Tie the celery stalks together with string and add to the pan with the spice bag.

Image of tomato mixture in a pan with the celery and spice bag

Bring to the boil then simmer for 25 minutes or until the onions are translucent.

Remove the celery and spice bag. Push the mixture through a sieve or food mill (this is where my electric mouli is a life saver).

Image of the puree going through the electric food mill

Return to the cleaned pan and cook for three quarters of an hour to an hour or until reduced by half.

Measure the puree and add vinegar, sugar, salt and paprika. Boil again, stirring frequently, until reduced and thick. Oded says this can take up to an hour, I find it takes less time.

Image of bottles of spicy tomato ketchup

Pour into hot sterilised bottles, heat process, cool and check the seals.

To be honest I don’t bother with the heat processing and I’ve never had a problem.

However I don’t want anyone to poison themselves so I suggest you follow the instructions.

The ketchup is ready straight away but improves with keeping.

Refrigerate after opening.

6 thoughts on “Spicy Tomato Ketchup

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