I was at the farm yesterday when Liz shared her ketchup with me. Homemade ketchup is a revelation. It tastes so much more fresh and the individual flavors are much more distinct than in the store-bought varieties. Liz had made two varieties, and they were both fabulous - deep intense flavors that would have been luscious with a burger, or just about anything else you could cook up.
Lucky for me, I had a tip that Jamie Oliver has a great ketchup recipe in Jamie at Home, so I looked it up. The good news here is that we are getting many of the ingredients in our CSA boxes, so there isn't much to add to make it all come together. Ketchup is also easy to can (with all the vinegar, you don't have to worry so much), so you can make up a big batch and shelve it for your next barbecue party!
Homemade Tomato Ketchup
1 large onion, chopped
1/2 a fennel bulb, chopped (or, presumably, one small bulb)
1 stick of celery, chopped
a thumb-sized piece of ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
1/2 a fresh red chilli, seeded and finely chopped
a handful fresh basil, stalks separated from leaves
1 Tbs coriander seeds
1 tsp black pepper
2 lbs tomatoes, chopped
3/4 C + 2 Tbs red wine vinegar
1/3 C brown sugar
Put all ingredients, onion through sea salt, into a large pan and saute on low for 10 - 15 mins.
Add tomatoes and 1 1/2 C water and bring to a boil. Simmer until liquid is reduced by half.
Add basil leaves then blend the sauce in a food processor. Force the pulp through a fine mesh sieve twice. Place sauce into a clean pan and add vinegar and sugar. Simmer over medium heat until the sauce becomes the consistency of ketchup.
- Christiana Thomas