Ketchup … of course


Ketchup … of course

Ketchup ... of course
Ketchup … of course

A book on tomatoes would not be complete without ketchup, so here is a recipe for classic tomato ketchup, in trademark red, with a green tomato variation, which is great for using up lots of unripe tomatoes.


Makes about 4½lb (2kg)

Prep time: 40 minutes

Cooking time: 2 hours

– 4½lb (2kg) ripe plum tomatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped.

– 1lb (500g) Granny Smith or other cooking apples, peeled, cored, and chopped.

– 3 onions, chopped.

– ¾ cup granulated sugar.

– ⅓ cup dark brown sugar.

– 2 cups cider vinegar.

– 1 tbsp salt.

– ½ tsp chili powder.

– ½ tsp ground cinnamon.

– ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper.

– 8 whole allspice berries.

– 7 whole cloves.


Step 1:
Red tomato ketchup (pictured)
Combine all the ingredients in a large stainless steel pan. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat slightly. Simmer, uncovered, for 2 hours, stirring from time to time. Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly. Using a hand-held blender, purée the mixture until velvety smooth. If the sauce is still watery, simmer for another 20–30 minutes, until thick and a rich reddish brown, stirring constantly. Pass the ketchup through a sieve, and ladle into hot sterilized jars or bottles. Seal tightly with nonreactive lids straight away, label, and store in a cool, dark place. It keeps for up to 9 months
Green tomato ketchup
Use either unripe tomatoes or green varieties such as ‘Green Zebra’ (p26) for this variation, and perhaps even a few tomatillos (papery husks removed). You will end up with about 2¼lb (1kg) ketchup. Put 3lb (1.5kg) cored and quartered unripe or green tomatoes, 1lb (500g) Granny Smith or other cooking apples, peeled, cored, and cut into small dice, and 1 large chopped onion in a large stainless steel pan. Add 1 cinnamon stick, 6 allspice berries, 4 cloves, ½ tsp cayenne pepper, 1 tsp black peppercorns, 1 bay leaf, 1 tbsp salt, and 1¼ cups cider vinegar. Bring to a boil and cook for 20 minutes or until the fruit and vegetables soften. Add 1 cup demerara sugar, dissolve completely, then bring to a gentle simmer. Cook for 1 hour, uncovered, until very soft and thick, stirring from time to time. Blend to a smooth purée, then pass through a sieve back into the pan. Simmer for another 20–30 minutes until the ketchup is thick. Ladle into sterilized jars or bottles, seal, and store as above. It keeps for up to 6 months.

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