A delicious and versatile condiment!
A delightful alternative to ketchup, tomato jam can be used in so many ways and it’s a great way to preserve a bumper crop if you’re a gardener. I love it on slices of rustic bread spread with chèvre or cream cheese; it’s also great as part of a cheese or charcuterie board. To make a true tomato jam, you need sufficient sweetness and acidity (beyond the tomatoes’ natural acidity), otherwise it will be more like spiced tomato sauce. I recommend using fresh plum-style tomatoes (San Marzano or Roma are best) but you could also use a can of whole plum tomatoes instead.
- 2 pounds (1 kg) plum or Roma tomatoes (about 8), cored and cut into 3/4 inch (2 cm) pieces
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons (30 mL) freshly-squeezed lime juice (or rice / apple cider vinegar)
- 1 tablespoon (15 mL) grated ginger root
- 1 teaspoon (5 mL) coarse kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon (1.25 mL) each ground cinnamon, cloves, smoked paprika and red pepper flakes
- Combine all the ingredients in a medium-sized, heavy-bottomed pot. Place pot, uncovered, over medium-high heat and bring the mixture to a boil. Reduce heat slightly so the mixture continues to simmer slowly.
- Cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 1 ½ to 2 hours. To test for doneness, run a wooden spoon or silicone scraper across the bottom of the pan. If the jam does not immediately fill in the space, it’s done.
- Transfer the jam to clean canning jar(s). Cool on the counter to room temperature then refrigerate for up to 2 weeks or freeze for longer storage.
Makes approximately 2 cups (500 mL).