Tomato ketchup with a difference

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judyk
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Tomato ketchup with a difference

Postby judyk » Sun Aug 23, 2020 10:35 am

As it's about the time when you wonder what you are possibly going to do with all these tomatoes, this is my all-time favourite tomato ketchup recipe. I found the original recipe on the internet and modified it to make it slightly less spicy, but the old recipe is still out there. "Fog City Diner" was a popular cajun restaurant in San Francisco, and its home-made tomato ketchup was famous. The restaurant closed in 2013, and generously shared its ketchup recipe online so that everyone could continue to enjoy it.

FOG CITY DINER TOMATO KETCHUP
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Makes about 5 cups


Ingredients:

4 lbs ripe plum tomatoes, coarsely chopped - pick a variety with a good taste, not too sweet
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup cider vinegar
1 tblsp minced garlic
3/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp mixed pickling spice
1 small cinnamon stick, about 1/4 inch long
1 1/2 tsp French mustard
1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
2 tblsp cornflour dissolved in 1/4 cup cold water
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

Method:

Combine the tomatoes, sugar, vinegar, garlic, salt, pickling spice, cinnamon, mustard and pepper in a heavy saucepan.

Bring the mixture to the boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce the heat and simmer the ketchup, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Remove the ketchup from the heat and let it cool for a few minutes.

Force the ketchup through a fine sieve to strain it, pressing down hard on the solids. Rinse out the saucepan, add the sieved ketchup, and return it to a boil over medium heat, stirring frequently. Reduce the heat and simmer the ketchup, stirring frequently, for 10 minutes. (Even if the ketchup seems thin, do not cook it for any longer, as the thickening power of the cornflour lessens with prolonged cooking. The ketchup will thicken a bit more upon cooling.)

Remove the ketchup from the heat and let it cool to room temperature. Pour the ketchup into sterilised glass bottles and store in the fridge for up to a month.
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Westi
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Re: Tomato ketchup with a difference

Postby Westi » Sun Aug 23, 2020 6:33 pm

Thanks for that judyk!

I was planning to make some ketchup with the overload this year and only just started looking for recipes & confused already! Perfect timing!
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Re: Tomato ketchup with a difference

Postby judyk » Mon Aug 24, 2020 10:07 am

Westi wrote:Thanks for that judyk!

I was planning to make some ketchup with the overload this year and only just started looking for recipes & confused already! Perfect timing!


That was lucky! I hope you enjoy it. The original recipe uses dry mustard powder - almost certainly English mustard, although they don't specify, and that would be far too hot for me so I use a mild French type like Dijon wholegrain, which I think gives it flavour, not burn. But if you are a fan of hot and spicy tastes, try using powdered, although I'd recommend reducing the amount the first time you make it, and gradually increasing it in subsequent batches until you find the right balance.
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Westi
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Re: Tomato ketchup with a difference

Postby Westi » Mon Aug 24, 2020 8:25 pm

Not too keen on hot but deffo like spicy! I maybe will do a mix of mustards as I progress! Why only 1 month if sterilised jars? OK when opened, but how long if sterilised & put in a dark but coolish larder do you think? Here I am planning in advance for the overload, I've loads of fruit but ripening slowly as checked in their growth from a very busy mole! Coming though & fingers crossed!
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judyk
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Re: Tomato ketchup with a difference

Postby judyk » Tue Aug 25, 2020 12:48 pm

Westi wrote:Not too keen on hot but deffo like spicy! I maybe will do a mix of mustards as I progress! Why only 1 month if sterilised jars? OK when opened, but how long if sterilised & put in a dark but coolish larder do you think? Here I am planning in advance for the overload, I've loads of fruit but ripening slowly as checked in their growth from a very busy mole! Coming though & fingers crossed!


Well I confess that I've kept them unopened in the bottom of a kitchen cupboard for up to three months, but I didn't want to be responsible for giving anyone food poisoning, so I gave the original storage recommendation. It's an American recipe and they seem generally a bit more chary about germs than the Brits.

I've made sauces, jams, chutneys etc. for years, but I've found no simple answer to how long things will keep, and IMO It really depends on the type of jar and lid, how you sterilise them, where you keep them, and what the contents include to preserve them.

When I make this recipe I use re-purposed glass sauce bottles with wide necks, so that they can be cleaned efficiently in the dishwasher (hot program if you have one). Then just before use I preheat a fan oven to 160c and stick the bottles in there for 15 minutes to sterilise them. I take them out (oven glove essential) and let them cool for a few minutes before use.

For lids, ideally you need to use new ones each time, so it can be difficult to find some that fit re-purposed bottles. The metal lids that twist on and have a centre that will depress when the bottle contents cool are the best, as they will pop when you open them and let you know that you had a good seal. To make these work, you need to bottle the sauce while it's still warm, so that the air in the bottle will shrink as it cools. (Alternatively, use Kilner bottles that have their own lids and seals.)

I keep the sauce in a draughty kitchen cupboard that backs onto an outside wall with exit holes for pipes, so temperatures in that space stay low - probably not much above 8c in the autumn or 4c in the winter. That's always worked for me, but a modern larder may be warmer. If in doubt, what about the garage?

The contents of the sauce include vinegar and salt which are preservers, and it also has a good amount of sugar, which helps. On a scale of 1 (low) to 10 (high) for risk of going off I'd say this recipe ranks at about 4 or 5. But I would definitely put the bottles in the fridge once opened.

Hope that helps...
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Westi
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Re: Tomato ketchup with a difference

Postby Westi » Tue Aug 25, 2020 7:10 pm

Thanks for that!

I am actually planning to replace all my bottles & jars this year as my mother-in-law gave them to me & although I was able to get new seals etc. that fitted initially I can't now, so probably a metric v's imperial issue. My larder is cool but ver full so we are converting the garage to a hobby room (mainly as Mr's hobbies are taking over all the space inside), but I have bagged myself a corner in there for another freezer & wall cupboards & I have a vision in my head of opening the doors of the cupboards & seeing all the lovely stuff. It will be insulated but not heated - don't want to spoil him!
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Re: Tomato ketchup with a difference

Postby vivienz » Wed Aug 26, 2020 8:53 pm

That looks like a lovely recipe - I will try it with my next batch of toms. Thanks, judyk!
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judyk
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Re: Tomato ketchup with a difference

Postby judyk » Thu Aug 27, 2020 11:32 am

Westi wrote:Thanks for that!

I am actually planning to replace all my bottles & jars this year as my mother-in-law gave them to me & although I was able to get new seals etc. that fitted initially I can't now, so probably a metric v's imperial issue. My larder is cool but ver full so we are converting the garage to a hobby room (mainly as Mr's hobbies are taking over all the space inside), but I have bagged myself a corner in there for another freezer & wall cupboards & I have a vision in my head of opening the doors of the cupboards & seeing all the lovely stuff. It will be insulated but not heated - don't want to spoil him!


Your preserves centre sounds great - I love looking at all the stuff in the cupboards too, especially if it's a nice combination of beautiful glowing colours! Good luck with the project - post us a picture when it's finished and full :D
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Re: Tomato ketchup with a difference

Postby Primrose » Thu Aug 27, 2020 1:02 pm

Interesting debate about storage times and preservation so will add to the debate, whilst diverting somewhat from ketchup.
We recently had to throw out a number of dry products stored in Kilner jars because we found they contained tiny mites of some kind.

The original infestation seems to have come from a bag of flour purchased about three months ago (when bags of flour were like gold dust to obtain because lockdown was in its early stages). . It seems that some of our Kilner jars with the more modern orange plastic fluted sealing rings do not close the glass lid down tightly enough to exclude tiny mites from being able to penetrate into the jar. We had to throw out several jars of dry products as a result.

On doing research I find it recommended that because bags of flour often have unhatched insect eggs in them when bought from the supermarket (presumably from when the flour was originally milled) it's desirable to puts new bags of flour into the freezer for 48 hours on bringing them home before storing elsewhere to kill these eggs. I didn't know that.
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Westi
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Re: Tomato ketchup with a difference

Postby Westi » Thu Aug 27, 2020 10:30 pm

Interesting Primrose! I suspect the drive to replace the flour shortage made them use what available - maybe? My local news said this years weather means the wheat harvest is 40% lower than expected & price of flour & cakes etc. are going to sky rocket! On my shopping list for a back up even though already way more expensive than Pre-Covid!
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