Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Homemade Ketchup Recipe

Our tomato harvest can include an overwhelming bounty.  Once our freezer is already overflowing with chopped/quartered tomatoes that Alycia has frozen in quart Ziploc bags, and we're filled to capacity with a years' worth of pasta and pizza sauce, we need to get creative with using the last of the tomatoes.  If we have enough tomatoes, then there's ketchup to make!!
This is actually about half of a large tomato haul of this weekend that I used to make catsup.  I took all our tomatoes (about 12-15 pounds), heated them up, and added a few ingredients:

  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
And brought everything to a bubbling simmer for about 10 minutes.
I pressed the tomato mixture through a strainer, which was actually a decent amount of work.
And catsup came out the bottom of the strainer, as though by magic.  OK, not really magic, more like a combination of gravity and elbow grease.
I had to cook it down for a few hours to remove all the liquid and thicken up the mixture.  The recipe said it would only take an hour, but it took me more like 4-5 hours to cook down.  Since this isn't a "canning approved" recipe, it isn't guaranteed to be acidic enough to can.  It would probably be OK, but it's not the type of thing that I like to mess with.  As such, I'll just keep this in the refrigerator or freeze it. 

Some people feel that making your own condiments (readily available in many grocery stores) like ketchup is some kind of sign of boredom or too much time on my hands.  I might not make this tasty ketchup every year, but I sure will if I have extra tomatoes on my hands. 

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