Saturday, June 22, 2013

Southern Style: Sweet & Savory Tomato Jam


When sweet meets savory, delicious explosions happen. It's nature. Go with it.  I love Summer; tomatoes, sweet and delicious.  I want to save it for myself and to share with everyone I know.  I found a tomato jam recipe, but it didn't really fit the flavor profile I was looking for. So I did what anyone would do: I made up my own.  This is the result.  Try it.  The only thing it costs you is an afternoon.

Ingredients:  Yield 5-6 8oz Jars

4# large ripe tomatoes
2 Large jalapeƱos
1 2" piece of ginger
1 Large sweet yellow onion
1 TBL fresh Thyme, minced
1 TBL fresh Oregano, minced
1/2 Cup apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 Cup dark brown sugar
1/2 Cup white sugar
2 Tsp salt
1 Tsp Cumin
1 Tsp Corriander
2 TBL Lemon juice
1 Tsp Chipotle, dried & ground (substitute cayenne)
1 Pat butter

Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil.  Make an "X" on the bottom of each tomato about 1" wide.  Drop tomatoes in the water in batches small enough to not kill the boil.  Boil for one minute and remove to an ice water bath. The skins should slough off easily.  

When done, chop into 1/2" dice and set aside.  Mince the onion and add to the tomatoes.

Cut off the top of the peppers and slice lengthwise. Remove seeds and membranes; mince and add to the tomatoes.  

Grate the ginger and add to the mix.

Mince the thyme and add to the mix.  You can also add freshly minced basil if you like in an amount equal to the thyme.

Place the mixture in a stainless steel pot.

Add everything together and cook over medium-high heat. The butter will help keep the foam at a minimum.  Be sure to stir well to keep it from burning.  The sugar makes it particularly susceptible, so be careful.  Once it has reached a boil, lower to a simmer, and wait. Wait. Wait. Wait. Stirring now and again, watch it to make sure it won't burn.

Reduce until it has the consistency of a thick, syrupy  jam.  Now is the time to either can it using a water bath (15 minute process) or refrigerate. It keeps up to two weeks, but it won't last that long.

Delicious on a sandwich, a panini, on roasted chicken... you will find your way with it.  Enjoy.

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