Author Notes: This started with a recipe from Sheila Lukins' USA Cookbook, but has morphed over time -- especially as my garden has grown (I use more vegetables in my version, and the flavorings have also been changed -- though the fresh tomatoes remain the star). I freeze it in half-pint containers, and have a burst of summery ketchup all year long -- except for the ketchup I distribute to (sometimes importunate) friends. The vegetables I use sometimes vary -- depending on what's ripe in the garden when I have 10 pounds of tomatoes -- but this is what I generally use, and what I prefer. You can also cut the recipe in half if you have fewer tomatoes. - louisez
Makes about 6 cups.
- 10 lbs. fresh tomatoes, coarsely chopped
- 2 onions, coarsely chopped
- 2 cloves garlic
- 2 red peppers, stemmed, seeded and coarsely chopped
- 2 jalapeno peppers, stemmed, seeded and chopped
- 2 stalks celery, with leaves, chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- 8 whole cloves
- 10 peppercorns
- 4 whole allspice
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1/4 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 2/3 cups white or cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon coarse salt
- Toss all vegetables in large pot. Combine herbs and spices in a cheescloth bundle or tea ball. Add to pot. Bring to a boil, lower heat, and simmer 1 hour.
- Remove spice bag and set aside. Use immersion blender or food processor to puree. Return spice bag and add remaining ingredients. Simmer 2 1/2 or 3 hours or till consistency you like (not so thick that it's gummy). To some extent, length of cooking will depend on moisture content of vegetables. Let cool. Ladle into sterilized containers suitable for freezing, Before freezing or after defrosting, keeps in fridge about 3 weeks.