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Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Homemade Tomato Ketchup

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Summer means that every weekend we get farmers market in our neighborhood. In the world of fertilizers and pesticides, shiny picture perfect vegetables have become the common sight. However, at these farmers market you get to see the real vegetables. Maybe a bit out of shape, but luscious and yummy nonetheless.

My little one loves her ketchup and uses them graciously. So I pickup those fresh pesticide free veges and make my own ketchup. They don’t look bright red as I don’t use strange numbered dyes. Also I get to avoid high fructose corn syrup and other equally strange stuff you get to read on the labels.

Ingredients

  • 2lb. red ripe tomatoes
  • 1/2 onion chopped 
  • 1 tsp. chopped garlic  
  • 1 stick cinnamon broken
  • 1/2 tsp. whole cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1tsp. black pepper corn
  • 1/2tsp. paprika powder (Kashmiri red chili powder)
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 2tbsp. olive oil (Sunflower or Canola oil can be used instead)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • Salt to taste

Procedure

Take a heavy bottom pan and add oil to it. Throw bay leaves, cinnamon, cloves and pepper corn into it. Allow them to crackle. Next to go in is chopped onion and garlic. Sauté for a while.

Now tomato halves to it. Add salt and mix well. Bring it to a boil. cook for 15 minutes stirring frequently. When the tomatoes are soft and mushy add sugar and vinegar. Cook till sugar melts. Turn off the heat and let it cool. Put this tomato mixture through a food strainer to discard skin and seeds.

Transfer the strained mixture to a pan and again bring it to a boil. Simmer on medium heat for 30 – 45 minutes until it is reduced by half. Pour in the hot bottle till the sauce is warm. Wait to cool down completely before you seal it. Keep it in the refrigerator.

NOTE:

We need to sterilize the bottle which we will use for storing the sauce since we are not adding any artificial preservatives. You want this bottle hot when you pour the ready sauce into it so do this process after you strain the sauce.  Wash the bottle in soap water and thoroughly rinse it. Take water in a sauce pan and bring it to a rolling boil. Place the bottle so that it is completely submerged in water. Don’t forget to put the lid as well.

Boil the jar for 10 to 15minutes and then remove it by using a clean tong. Dry thoroughly. 

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