One of my blog-hoping stops is the girls of The Pinterest Project and when I saw Jamie's post on homemade ketchup it stopped me in my tracks.
Whoooa Nelly! You can make ketchup?
I suppose I knew it was do-able, just didn't think about actually making it! I pinned that baby and just waited until I had enough tomatoes to make it. Waited...and waited. My tomatoes didn't do so well this summer, not like usual but we've had enough for sandwiches and salads etc... My cherry tomatoes however just exploded! I figured why not? Since they're not very meaty I thought I'd roast them first thinking it would reduce the liquid reduction time. I sliced them all in half and threw them on two cookie sheets. Of course I didn't take a picture...even though I thought I should since they were so beautiful once they were all roasted.
(Just pretend there is a mouthwatering picture of
two pans of roasted cherry and grape tomatoes here)
I threw those roasted tomatoes into a pot with some onion and cubanelle peppers from the garden and simmered it all till the veggies were nice and soft. I plunged my immersion blender in the pot and blended it up. After looking at the recipe again I realized I needed a sieve or a food mill. Great! I have neither. But I do have a splatter screen!
I smooched all those bits and pieces through that splatter screen over my pot and ended up with lots of skins and seeds. To my beautiful seedless skinless tomato puree I added the cider vinegar, brown sugar, and cayenne pepper to the pot. I didn't have celery seeds like the recipe called for so I just left them out. Surely it couldn't hurt the taste much right?
I read the rest of the recipe..."Combine the cloves, mustard seed, allspice and crushed cinnamon stick in a cheesecloth bundle or tea ball and add to pot." cheesecloth? Really? I know, I'm a foodie...I should have some of that around somewhere but...it's me. I did however have a cotton skirt I'm shortening so I used a piece of that material to make a bundle of allspice and cinnamon stick pieces. I didn't have cloves or mustard seeds so I added some garlic and black peppercorns to the bundle and threw it in.
See my skirt floating in the boiling cauldren? Ok...so it's not really a cauldron and it was simmering not boiling but you get the idea. Jamie said that this, like other canning projects was a process of cooking and waiting...and waiting again...so I waited. Till the liquid was reduced by about half. The ketchup was thick and saucy, very ketchup like so I turned it off and waited...again...till it cooled.
Like my fancy-pants container? Just pretend it's one of those pretty quilted ball jars.
Works for me...my motto is 'Use what you have' and I just happened to have an empty mayo squeeze bottle.
Of course I had to make some fried potatoes to try it out and the verdict...
It tastes a bit like Open Pit BBQ sauce more then ketchup. SF even agreed it was pretty good so it's a win for me!
Thanks Jamie for inspiring me to tackle this project.
It makes me happy.