Sunday, September 6, 2015

Sweet and Savory Tomato Jam

Homemade Tomato Jam
I’ll admit it. I grew up spoiled.

Whether it was grandma’s cookies, my mom’s jams, pickles, and canned goods – or relative’s homemade biscuits, breads and pies.  It seemed everyone knew how to make things delicious.

On August 8th, we had a fire on the farm, losing buildings, animals, and inventory. 

Amid all the sadness and kindness we’ve received, a lovely thing happened: the fruit trees came in with a bumper crop of apples, crabapples, and pears.

I began making jams like crazy, in spite of never having done so before.  It just seemed like the right timing, and the right thing to do.

This is the first recipe I made, just two small jars of “ideas” to build up my confidence (using tomatoes), and it didn’t take any specialized equipment.

My husband Dan was reluctant to sample the trial batch, with a who-are-you-and-what-did-you-do-with-my-wife look on his face.

“It’s not right, making jam from tomatoes.”

“Tomatoes are fruit!” I insisted.

After a few nibbles, he jokingly added “Okay, I’ll keep you if you can make more like this”.

I will and I have, because it’s family tradition.

Sweet and Savory Tomato Jam
 Sweet and Savory Tomato Jam
Makes about 1 Cup

1½ lbs. Roma Tomatoes
4 Cloves Garlic
Zest of 1 Large Lemon
1TB Olive Oil
1TB Lemon Juice
1TB Rice Wine Vinegar
½ tsp. Kosher Salt

1-4 TB Raw, Unfiltered Honey

Grill tomatoes over medium heat until they soften and the skin slips.

Remove cores. Transfer to a saucepan with all ingredients EXCEPT honey.

Cover, set heat on low.  Stew for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Let cool.

Use a stand or immersion blender to create a chunky paste.

Return to pan and reduce over low heat until a spoon drawn across the bottom of the pan leaves a clean line (about 30 minutes).

Be mindful of scorching.

Stir in honey, one tablespoon at a time until sweetened to your liking.  (I used only one.)

Adjust for salt.

Transfer to a sterilized container. Keeps refrigerated for 2 weeks. (Recipe may also be canned.)