Saturday, October 22, 2011

Old-fashioned Tomato Ketchup

Homemade ketchup is rich, full-bodied and infinitely better than the over-processed, corn syrup-laden commercial version.


7 pounds tomatoes, chopped

2 cups onion, chopped

1 cup bell pepper, chopped

½ cup sugar

1 tablespoon molasses

1 1/4 cup cider vinegar

Spice packet:

12 whole cloves

15 whole allspice

6 cardamom pods

1 teaspoon coriander seed

1 cinnamon stick

1 bay leaf

1 tablespoon coarse salt

1 teaspoon black peppercorns


Place chopped tomatoes, onions and peppers in a large pot. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Press through a food mill to make a smooth sauce.

To make the spice packet, cut a 5-inch square of cheesecloth, place the spices in the centre and tie closed with a piece of twine.

Return the sauce to the pot and add sugar, vinegar and the spice packet.

Simmer on medium-low heat for 30 minutes to an hour until the sauce has reduced down to the desired consistency. Stir often to prevent the bottom burning.

Remove from the heat and discard the spice packet. Ladle the thickened sauce into hot, sterilized jars leaving ½ inch headspace and heat-process in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes.

Makes about 3 pints.

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