Any gardener or permaculturist has experienced this. They have too much of one thing in their garden suddenly, and soon after it is gone.
One way to extend the flavours and joys of your own home grow produce is to preserve it or process it so that it's shelf life increases by a few weeks or months.
We decided to make Tomato Ketchup from the abundance of tomatoes we have this year. Remember, to watch our videos on how to get a great harvest of tomatoes, and also how to trellis them for maximum productivity.
We recommend you harvest the tomatoes when semi ripe, and allow them to stand in a basket on your kitchen counter till they turn completely red. Now is when you start making them into ketchup!
So here is the recipe we follow:
Tomatoes 2 kg
Jaggery 1 and 1/2 cup (adjust for sweetness)
Salt to taste
Some spice to taste - herbs or garam masala or all spice (depending on your local taste)
Some red chillies to taste
Apple Cider Vinegar 2 tablespoons
Heat of a pot of water, and bring it to boil. Add the tomatoes to this pot and blanch them - that is wait for the skin to shrivel off. Take the tomatoes out and allow them to cool down. After about 30 minutes, liquidize the tomatoes in your food processor. Don't make them into a watery solution - just into a thick puree.
Now, transfer this puree into a food mill, and strain the skin & seeds of the tomatoes. You should be left with a smooth paste, which will become the tomato sauce.
Transfer this paste to a fresh thick bottomed pan, and bring it to a boil. Add the jaggery, salt, spice and chillies. Allow it to simmer for another 15 minutes, till the sauce becomes dark red and cooked. At this point, taste it and check for salt, sugar and spice. Add anything that may seem less to you.
Take the sauce off the gas. All it to cool down. Add the vinegar and mix thoroughly. The ketchup is ready!
Transfer the tomato ketchup into sterilised glass bottles. Keep them in your root cellar or refrigerator. Enjoy!